THE Philippine Press Institute (PPI), the national association of newspapers, issued a warning to the public about the recent scam perpetrated by fraudulent persons claiming to be their employees and use its name to lure victims.

PPI executive director Ariel Sebellino said that their office has been receiving piles of complaints from the alleged victims of scam from an office or group pretending to be PPI or from individuals claiming to be PPI employees.

According to Sebellino, the crooks send fake information through e-mail, short message service (sms), facsimile, or any other form or mode of communication using PPI's name and its appurtenances to conduct extortion.

Thus, PPI reminded the citizens not to fall prey to the deceitful activities conducted by scammers as they are not initiating such deeds.

"No such thing came from our office in Intramuros. These are fake - and coming from posers and charlatans. Victims, would-be victims, and the public in general are warned not to cooperate with these (fake) people or groups by (not) giving in to their absurd claims and demands," Sabellino said.

He urged victims to inform their office so that they could take legal action against fake persons before they could fool many others.

"Please report to the PPI Sectetariat any such blatant, malicious, and evil efforts to malign the 64-year old organization or use its name for their own interests by making hapless and innocent victims fall into their traps," he said.

The PPI is currently keeping and documenting proofs of complaints alongside fake letters or messages as they have already consulted the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) for necessary action to apprehend the suspects.

He underscored that they are the active and regular members, Board, and secretariat and remain to be the true and authentic PPI.

Their lone office is located at Room 206, Banco Filipino Condominium, Aduana Street, Intramuros, Manila with telephone numbers 5279632, 5274478, and 5273390 (fax) and email address (JCR)