Fraud: Getting Japan Travel Subsidy but Paying Handling Fee First|冒名電郵 稱提供赴日旅遊補助詐手續費

Recently, citizens have received emails from officials of Japan's Tottori prefecture providing travel subsidies in return for a small up-front handling fee. It has been confirmed that this a phishing scam and the public has been advised to remain vigilant over this kind of email fraud.

These are photos of the Tottori Sand Dunes, one of the famous attractions in the Tottori Prefecture in Japan. The beauty formed by nature's artwork of sand and wind attracts crowds every year. However, someone has been trying to defraud Taiwanese nationals under the name of the "Tottori Prefecture Tourism Bureau". The scam typically involves promising the victim travel subsidies, in return for a small up-front handling fee.

This is actually a new type of scam. After investigations via our overseas office, we can confirm that the so-called plan, subsidy and names of the relevant employees are all made-up. They don't exist.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said this is a new scam where the scammer had pretended to be officials from the Tottori government. These email scams usually states that subsidies will be given for trips to the Tottori Prefecture once handling fees have been paid. To make it even more convincing, it even had a plan attached. The real Tottori government has proactively informed Taiwan about this fraud scheme, and clarified that there has been no such plan. Travel agencies also say, that although Japan does often offer subsidies, it is nearly always through travel agencies or hotels.

He is giving you a subsidy, yet he still needs a relevant representative contact, and he needs someone to confirm and certify and then help you to apply? I think for consumers, you need to have a basic understanding, that when he is focused on you personally and asking you to pay first then that's a warning sign.

I think I will first pay a visit to the Tourism Bureau to confirm whether this is real.

Most of the public said that if they have to pay handling fees first, they will feel wary. Meanwhile, industry professionals said that although Tottori Prefecture is a travel destination, but as its logistics are not as convenient as other destinations, there are relatively fewer travelers. Due to this reason, it is harder for Taiwanese nationals to verify information regarding Tottori, and they think this could be the reason as to why the scammer chose Tottori as the facade of their scam.


外交部發言人 歐江安表示:「這個其實也是新型的詐騙手法,經過我們駐外單位的查證,所謂的企劃書、還有補助金,以及相關的職員名稱,都是偽造的,並不存在。」


旅遊業者 林承曄表示:「他要補助給你,因為他畢竟還是,要有一個相對的對口單位,他需要有人去做確認,認證這方面,然後幫你做請領,我想一般消費者,你應該要有一個基本認知,他要針對你個人去,然後他先跟你付錢這件事,基本上應該就是一個,應該要有警惕。」



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