Common form of fraud targeting Vietnamese enterprises: Notice of expiration of digital signature service (Token signature for eTax signing in VN)

The beginning of 2024 has seen the emergence of fake digital signature providers, taking advantage of the tax finalization season for individuals and businesses.

The Vietnam Cyber Emergency Response Center (VNCERT/CC Center, Ministry of Information and Communications) has reported that impostors are sending direct email notifications claiming that digital signatures have expired. They then request customers to renew them, with the intention of fraudulently appropriating assets while the service package is still valid.

VNCERT/CC Center in Vietnam has received numerous reports containing emails informing recipients that their company’s digital signature has expired and must be renewed immediately.

Examples include: “The company’s electronic signature is under token status: old version – expires. Stop depositing bids, invoices, and tax declarations after the date… The company needs to contact immediately to extend the service, avoid having the account locked…” or “Token is locked and tax deposit is temporarily suspended, need to contact with the system or teller to renew the service. Stop depositing bids, invoices, declarations at date…“.

Upon evaluation, VNCERT/CC Center found that these fraudulent emails often have the extension “.gmail” or domain names from abroad. Furthermore, the content of the email is generic and does not represent any specific supplier or authorized agent. The contact phone number provided in the email belongs only to the teller and is frequently changed.

This fraudulent method follows a systematic approach. Initially, the scammer sends an email warning that the individual’s or business’s digital signature is about to expire. Subsequently, they send notifications that the digital signature will expire that day and must be renewed immediately. If there is no response, the impostor continues to send emails stating that tokens are locked and accounts are suspended.

In this manner, many unsuspecting individuals and businesses are easily deceived and unfairly lose money.

Digital transformation has become a prevailing trend for many businesses, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises. In recent years, digital signatures have been deemed the optimal solution for businesses in the process of digital transformation, leveraging today’s technological platforms.

According to statistics from the Ministry of Information and Communications, by the end of October 2023, the total number of public digital certificates issued reached 6,530,932, marking an 18.32% increase compared to the same period in 2022 (5,519,548 certificates).

Presently, individuals and businesses regard digital signatures as authentication technology, ensuring security, transaction safety over the Internet, data integrity, and providing evidence against denial of responsibility for signed content, thereby instilling confidence in business transactions.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *