Do you prefer shopping online? If yes, you must be very careful. When you shop online, you will be asked to provide certain private information and this information could be leaked to fraudsters. Recently, the Uttar Pradesh Police arrested a 23-year-old man for illegally selling the data of 14 Lakh online shoppers. This data leakage lead to an online fraud of Rs 200 Crores. The fraudster and his gang carried out this fraud.
The gang mainly targeted online shoppers of e-commerce portals like Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra, Paytm, Snapdeal, HomeShop18, Shopclues and many more. Data of these targeted customers was sold to carry out various kinds of online fraud.
To carry out this fraud, the accused named Patel partnered with the employees of various e-commerce portals and stole personal information of customers. Patel was a final year MBA student and also the director of a digital marketing company.
Patel used to pay a couple of rupees, to collect information on each customer. Once the customers' data was collected, he would sell it to fake call centers located in Maharashtra, Delhi-NCR, Rajasthan, Bihar, and Punjab. Customer’s data was sold to fake call centers at Rs 5-6 per customer.
By using customer’s data, fake call centers used to make calls posing as representatives of e-commerce companies and convinced customers to transfer money. They used to tell online shoppers that they were offering lucky draws and expensive gifts, against the purchases they had made recently. In order to claim the gifts, customers were asked to deposit a certain amount as registration fees. Customers parted with sensitive banking details and the gang used this to transfer money to payment merchants like PayU, Paytm, Ola Cabs, Mobikwik and some bank accounts.
To commit this fraud, the gang also used UPI payment modes like Paytm, PhonePe, Google Pay and BHIM. These accounts were created on fake profiles.
This fraud was done at various Indian states including Delhi-NCR, Bihar, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Punjab, and others. Police have been receiving many complaints where innocent people have been cheated by fraudsters, using personal information. As per the information, the gang has committed fraud worth Rs 200 Crore till date.
1. To avoid this kind of fraud, never respond to unsolicited offers received through emails, messages, phone calls, and other social media.
2. Do not provide your personal banking information like card number, CVV, OTP, and other information to anyone over the phone.
3. Never transfer money as an advance or registration fee to anyone who contacts you in the name of offering lucky draws and expensive gifts.
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