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DOLE chief warns OFWs against loan scam

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Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz

Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz has cautioned overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and their families against a scam circulating in the Internet using the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) name and logo to make the fraudulent document appear legitimate.

“OWWA is not offering such loan.  Be wary about this scam that asks OFWs to pay a certain amount in exchange of an availment of loan from the OWWA,” said Baldoz who earlier was alerted to the scam by OWWA administrator Rebecca Calzado.

“Our Philippine Overseas Labor Offices (POLO) in Hongkong and Macau have reported receiving inquiries from OFWs regarding such ‘OWWA loan’ and they have been promptly warned,” Baldoz added.

The Secretary said an announcement-warning has already been posted at the OWWA’s official Facebook account and at www.owwa.gov.ph, its official website.

Labor Attaché Nenita Garcia of POLO-Hongkong SAR reported that her office has been receiving calls from OFWs inquiring about the availment of OWWA loans that require an applicant to deposit 1,000 Hongkong Dollars for the release of the loan.

Similar calls and queries have also been reported by Labor Attaché Vivian Tornea of POLO-Macau. OWWA chief Calzado said her office had also detected a Facebook account named, “OWWA Loan.”

“We have reported the fake account to Facebook management,” she said, as she reminded OFWS and the public to be vigilant of scams used by swindlers to deceive people.

“I urge you not to give any information, especially if financial in nature, to unidentified persons.  Transact only with OWWA offices to prevent being victimized by scams,” said Calzado. (Joel C. Atencio)

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