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‘He was just so real’: Why online scams are claiming victims among the educated and well-off

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*Names have been changedSINGAPORE: In May last year, Eliza* joined a Discord group set up for people to chat about investment.

It seemed a safe space to the Singaporean legal professional in her 40s, who wanted to connect with others in a like-minded community.When a private message popped up on her screen, she thought nothing of it.

In a group of around 12,000 users, it was common practice to message one another privately. So she responded to the user named Andy.Over in Kuala Lumpur,Samantha*, 50, a professional in a public-listed company, was browsing Instagram in January this year when she received a message from a stranger.

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