Singapore and Malaysia sign MoU to tackle scams across telecom channels

The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) of Singapore and the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to combat scams across telecommunication channels.

Scam warning video by Singapore Police
A video posted by the Singapore Police Force warns people on impersonation scams. Screenshot courtesy: Instagram/singaporepoliceforce

The MoU was signed on February 25, 2024, in Barcelona, Spain, at the Mobile World Congress, according to a media release.

“Scams are a cross-border issue, requiring strong co-operation amongst countries,” said the release. “Singapore and Malaysia are close neighbours and share a common resolve in combating scams. Both countries have collaborated across many issues, such as cross-border enforcement actions against scammers.”

It added: “Malaysia is, therefore, a key partner for Singapore in building up regional co-operation in combating scams across our telecommunications channels.”

This MoU was signed by IMDA Chief Executive Lew Chuen Hong and MCMC Chairman Tan Sri Mohamad Salim bin Fateh Din.

Singapore Malaysia MoU on combating scams
IMDA Chief Executive Lew Chuen Hong (left) and MCMC Chairman Tan Sri Mohamad Salim bin Fateh Din (right) signed an MoU on February 25, 2024, in Spain. Photo courtesy:

Improving cross-border exchange of strategic intelligence to combat scams across telecom channels and driving a co-ordinated regional approach to better protect both countries’ citizens from scammers are the top goals of the MoU.

The memorandum covers the following key areas:

• Providing regulatory assistance and co-operation related to scam telephone calls and text messages

• Facilitating research and education related to scam telephone calls and text messages

• Enabling the mutual exchange of knowledge and expertise through training programmes and staff exchanges

“The IMDA recognises the importance of adopting a global approach to address the threat of scams and has earlier entered into similar MoUs with New Zealand’s Department of Internal Affairs; United States Federal Communications Commission; and Australia’s Communications and Media Authority,” said the release.

“This latest MOU with MCMC represents a further step to strengthen international partnerships against scams coming through telecommunication channels,” it added.

The IMDA leads Singapore’s digital transformation by developing a vibrant digital economy and an inclusive digital society.