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China's war on rampant telecom scams

New law gives authorities weapons to help prevent cellphone, internet fraud

Telecom scams in China have caused hundreds of billions of dollars in losses and even suicides.

Never before have so many entrusted so much to complete strangers, transferring life savings to people who turn out to be cellphone or computer scammers.

The numbers are astonishing. In just 15 months through July 2022, China solved 594,000 cases of telecom and internet fraud, according to the Ministry of Public Security. In 2021, authorities stopped 1.5 million people from transferring 329.1 billion yuan ($47.5 billion) to scammers, authorities said.

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