"It's Insurance" — Student Asked To Pay RM1,575 For A Screen Protector At Petaling Street

She advised people to be vigilant when shopkeepers play word games with them.

Cover image via Gts科技爆料站 (Facebook) & China Press

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A student could not believe she was manipulated into paying RM1,575 while trying to buy a phone screen protector at Petaling Street in Kuala Lumpur earlier this week

The distraught 23-year-old, who is known only as Ching, originally took to Facebook on Tuesday, 28 February, to share her experience and to warn others of the modus operandi of the scam.

"The most expensive screen protector in human history," she wrote sarcastically on a photo of Petaling Street she uploaded.

Ching recounted that she was at Petaling Street alone last Sunday, 26 February, when a salesman approached her with an offer to change her screen protector and phone cover for RM25

"I was going to avoid him but he came to me anyway," she said.

"But it just happened that I needed to change my phone's screen protector. I thought I would support [his business], so I followed him to his phone shop."

At the store, however, Ching said the man then strangely asked her for her identification card (IC).

"I asked him why would I need to give my IC to buy a screen protector, and he told me that the screen came with insurance, so he wanted to help me register for it," she wrote.

At that point, she thought that he was talking about warranty for the item, and so she gave her IC number to him.

However, she realised that as his colleague was typing her IC number into the computer, the screen showed that the cost of the insurance was RM2,099

Shocked, she brought it up to the colleague and asked if she had to pay the amount, but he assured her that she only needed to pay the aforementioned price of RM25 to change her screen protector.

Even so, moments later, after they changed her screen protector and returned her phone to her, they asked her for a total of RM2,124.

"Didn't you just say it's only RM25?" she asked them immediately.

She said they gave her evasive and unhelpful answers until eventually the colleague said to her, "We thought that you understood what insurance is. I don't think you have heard of it, but once you have registered, you can't cancel it."

Confused, Ching said that the salesman, who first brought her to the shop, offered to 'help' her

"He said it was the first time they encountered such a situation and he didn't know that I hadn't heard of that type of insurance," she said.

"At that time, I was thinking he was a 'good person' and it was just a misunderstanding."

After discussing further to settle the 'issue', Ching said they negotiated a discount for her and asked her to pay RM1,575 only for the insurance and screen protector.

"I don't know why I gave the money instead of just turning around and leaving," she said in her Facebook post later.

Image via China Press

The original post was shared over 10,000 times before she took it down

After hearing from other victims of the same scam, Ching eventually went to Bukit Bintang member of parliament (MP) Fong Kui Lun's service centre for assistance and to lodge a police report.

According to The Star, the shop owner refunded the total amount to her with the aid of the police.

"I would just like to remind everyone to be vigilant and to be aware when shopkeepers play word games with you. It is best to record it," she advised in her Facebook post.

"Also, if you encounter situations like these, you need to ask others for help, don't be silly like me. I was fooled and still cooperated with him to give him the money."

In 2021, a 24-year-old Malaysian shared how mentally manipulative scammers could be when caught unaware:

In the unfortunate event you are scammed, here is how to contact the National Scam Response Centre:

Beware of these other scams in Malaysia:

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