Have you ever received an email or message in the name of the Income Tax Department, stating your tax refund has been approved? If yes, this could be a fake. There are many gangs in India which are set up by fraudsters to cheat people in the name of providing income tax refunds.
Recently Ahmedabad police arrested seven people including three Nigerians for creating a fake website in the name of the Income Tax department and cheating taxpayers by hacking 2,000 bank accounts.
The gang had targeted 4,727 people across India, of which they have cheated 2,500 people and pocked crores of rupees. As a lot of taxpayers wait for tax refunds, it has become really easy for fraudsters to cheat them and make quick money.
This fraud began with cybercriminals creating a fake website in the name of the Income Tax department. This website looks similar to the original IT department website. After the fake website is created, fraudsters send the website link to taxpayers via SMS or an email promising Income Tax refunds. As soon as the receiver clicks on the link, he is redirected to the fake website of the IT department.
In this page, the victim is asked to provide certain information including the bank name. After the bank name is filled, he is directed to a fake bank webpage where he will be asked to provide bank account details.
After providing all the details, the victim is sent a link of a mobile app. Once the app is downloaded to the victim’s phone, the fraudsters hack his smartphone and gain access to his net banking password. Using this information, the fraudsters will transfer money from his account to the dummy account.”
Money which cybercriminals had stolen from the bank account of taxpayers was converted to Bitcoins and sent to foreign countries.
1. If you have received a tax refund from the Income Tax department, you are sent intimation on the refunds with a proper notice. Do not entertain emails and SMS's which promise you a tax refund.
2. Do not click on the suspicious links which are sent through emails and SMS's. Do not open the attachment as it may contain malicious codes.
3. Never send your bank details, login name or user ID, card details, PIN number, and OTP to anyone over email, SMS or disclose this over a phone call.
4. You must look at the domain name of the website carefully, while browsing online.
5. You can even identify fake emails by observing them carefully. Fake emails will normally have incorrect spellings and incorrect email header.
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