Finding a life partner is one of the most important steps in life. It is not an easy task. It is incredibly important to run a background check on the bride or groom. Matrimonial sites are the go-to resource nowadays for people who want to find the right life partner. The problem is, these sites aren't totally safe. If you don't take certain precautions, you'll regret it. Matrimonial sites have recently become a more popular venue for people being cheated. The following is an example of a real-life cheating incident that occurred on a matrimonial website.

Matrimonial Fraud: A Real-Life Incident

A Hyderabad-based woman has been defrauded of Rs 14 lakh by a Delhi-based businessman she met on a Matrimonial site a year ago. She received a message from someone introducing himself as a businessman born and living in the UK. They both expressed their interest in getting married and began communicating.

Following a few days, the accused informed the victim that he was planning a trip to India with his sister and nephew, and he requested that she pay for their visas. In response to the woman's inability to collect enough money, the accused offers to send 1 Million British pounds via a third party. After a few days, she received a call from the agent, telling her that a container of foreign currency had arrived in India, but it was stuck at customs.

The woman was asked to pay a lot of money for customs clearance fees, handling and transport charges, anti-drug/terrorism clearance, customs clearance yellow tags, and anti-money laundering fees to be able to release the container. In order to make the victim believe the fraudsters, they even sent photos of British currency bundles. Having paid up, she became a victim of online matrimonial fraud.

Also Check: Fraud Story #184- Online Fraud: Email hacked and money stolen from e-wallet

Tips To Avoid Matrimonial Fraud-

1. Make sure the website you are interested in is genuine before you register. You should make sure the website has positive reviews from members.

2. Before getting in touch with a person you met on a matrimonial site, check his or her background. Look into his/her social media profile and ensure that all the information provided by him/her is accurate.

3. Innocent people are often cheated on these matrimonial sites, so you must never lend your money to someone you meet on a matrimonial site. You may be tricked by scammers who claim they are in a tough situation or who ask you for money to clear gifts at the customs office. Do not fall victim to such tricks.

4. It is recommended that digital escrow platforms be used for payment. When making an online payment with Escrow, you do not share your financial information with anyone. 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 #194. 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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