In spite of the economic slowdown caused by the lockdown, online crime is not slowing down. There have been hundreds of reports across India where people have been scammed online by fraudsters under the guise of great deals and offers.
An advertisement claiming to double a user's money in ten days fooled three young people after they clicked on it. The scam cost them Rs 1.50 lakh.
Three youngsters lost Rs 1.50 lakh through online fraud
In Pernambut, K Riyaz Ahamed, who lives on Diwan Majidh Street, came across an ad claiming to help him double his money. A phone number was also attached to the advertisement, according to the victim’s statement.
In response to the phone call, the person who answered identified himself as the manager of BR Shares Private Limited. Riyaz was given more information about the offer and after he agreed, he was sent a link (https://www.itc-share.com) and asked to download the app and create an account. Riyaz created an account and deposited Rs 100 into it after downloading.
He then paid Rs 500 through GPay and earned Rs 16, which he withdrew immediately. Then he was told to deposit Rs 55,000 and would receive Rs 84,000 within 10 days.
Despite submitting the amount, Riyaz did not receive the promised amount after 10 days. When Riyaz contacted the man, he was told to submit the same amount again in order to receive the whole amount and advised to share the link with his friends. Then, Riyaz told his brother and a friend about the application, and they paid Rs 95,000 to get their money back. Despite this, there still was no response, so the link was removed.
A complaint was then made to the Cyber Crime police, which filed charges under various sections of the IT Act and IPC. They are tracking the account associated with the app. The mobile number was in a North Indian state, suggesting that it may have been bought under false information.
Tips to Avoid Such Scams -
1. It is best not to respond to unsolicited offers received via email, message, phone calls, or social media ads.
2. Don't talk to anyone about your personal or financial details over the telephone. You should always check the legitimacy of the caller before transferring any money.
3. Transferring money as an advance fee to anyone who contacts you in the name of a lottery is a bad idea.
4. Be careful when investing in schemes that sound too good to be true. Do not invest in unregulated companies or entities.
5. The use of digital escrow platforms for payments is recommended. When you make an online payment with Escrow, no financial information is shared. There is a platform for escrow called Vouch.
How does digital escrow work?
In digital escrow, a third-party account holds the money deposited by the buyer until the seller fulfills the terms of the contract. The escrow company supervises the transacting parties.
What is the role of Digital Escrow in preventing online fraud in India?
Digital escrow services are offered by many companies in India. Among the most trusted is Vouch.
Vouch’s Digital Escrow service is a transparent way for buyers and sellers to build trust and secure a clean transfer of product and payment. Sellers can feel assured that they will be fairly compensated promptly, and buyers will feel confident that their order will be delivered as expected and on schedule. Vouch Digital Escrow keeps you updated and informed at every step of the transaction process till the end. Vouch’s professionals are always available to assist you with all queries that you may have during the entire transaction process.
There is no scope for deceit or fraud since the payments, shipping, delivery, and execution are carried out under the honest and watchful eyes of the Vouch’s professionals. With Vouch, any business transaction becomes transparent, uncomplicated, and hassle-free. If you ever come across a fraudster asking for OTP, asking you to scan a QR code, or asking you to click on phishing links, you can simply refuse and ask him/her to proceed with the transaction through Vouch.
This is Fraud Story #189. Check back here for more fraud stories and scams that you can protect yourself from.
Safety is not just about protecting your credit, debit card number, and UPI accounts. It's about having control of your money till you've received the product or service you bought online!
Note: This is a good-faith initiative to educate the world about avoiding frauds like these and how to act when you're becoming a victim of such a situation.
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