Is this the UAE's least convincing phishing scam?

A WhatsApp message from the 'Cantrl Bank of Uae' urges 'coustmores' to get in touch

FILE PHOTO: The WhatsApp messaging application is seen on a phone screen August 3, 2017. REUTERS/Thomas White/File Photo
Powered by automated translation

There was a time when conmen would craft fraudulent scams with at least a hint of convincing people to part with their money.

Those days, it seems, are over – at least when it comes to the UAE’s latest phishing scam.

A message is circulating on WhatsApp from the ‘Cantrl Bank of Uae’ urging 'coustmores 'to get in touch.

“Dear coustmores, your ATM card has been blocked,” reads the message, which is repeated in Arabic and littered with mistakes.

“Because you did not have an update yet.if you want your ATM card to work properly, then contact this number x to #056228787,” it says, including a lengthy Google link below.

Twitter user Mayank Kumar, from Dubai, shared the message online, pointing out it was particularly unconvincing.

Banks issue regular warnings they would never ask for them to share their personal details in a text message.

The UAE’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority warned WhatsApp users about a separate scam this week which tricks users into allowing hackers access to their accounts.

The message, which asked people to reply and add their number or click on a link to verify their phones, was circulated in both English and French.

The advisory warns people not to reply to verification messages unless they are generated by a link they requested.

“Mobile users should not share the verification code that is sent to them by SMS, otherwise, their account will be compromised. Many WhatsApp accounts were hacked this way, and subscribers lost all their details,” said the TRA.