Mysore/Mysuru: UPI or Unified Payments Interface has earned popularity for its user-friendliness interface. It is a single platform that brings many banking services and features under one universal roof.
However, with the increased number of transactions happening through UPI, there has been a significant rise in the cases of bank fraud. Dhiraj Kumar Chaubey, a businessman and a resident of Hebbal in the city, lost Rs. 14,400 on Nov. 15 as a UPI app was automatically installed on his phone while he was interacting with a fraudster, posing as a customer service executive of a telecom company.
Soon after the fraud, Dhiraj Kumar complained to the Cyber, Economic and Narcotics (CEN) Crime Police Station over the phone and acting swiftly, the CEN Police were able to block the fraudster’s account and reverse the money (Rs. 14,400) deducted from Dhiraj Kumar’s bank account.
Speaking to Star of Mysore, Dhiraj Kumar said that he wanted the latest internet fibre broadband connection to his home and office and was Googling it at 4 pm on Nov. 15. He saw an advertisement on Google and called the ‘customer care’ number displayed there. “A person speaking on the other end told me that the broadband connection is available in Hebbal, Mysuru and he would call me back from his officenumber,” he said.
The caller later told Dhiraj Kumar that he had to pay Rs. 5 through UPI as a registration fee and the latter agreed, without suspecting anything. “Meanwhile, BHIM app (probably a deceptive UPI handle used here to trick unsuspecting users) with MobiKwik as the payment receiver app was automatically installed on my mobile phone as I was speaking over the phone. Usually, a user grants privacy permission to apps to access data on any mobile phone. But in this case, the app automatically granted the privacy and transaction permissions and the fraudster withdrew Rs. 14,400 from my bank account,” he explained.
Soon after the fraudster ended the conversation, Dhiraj Kumar saw that there were 160 messages on his phone. “Most of the messages read: ‘Our registration for the BHIM app has started. If it is not you please report now to your bank. Do not share the card details/OTP to avoid any financial loss -NPCI’ and there were other messages that had granted transaction permission to MobiKwik,” he said.
Wasting no time, Dhiraj Kumar called his bank to debit-freeze his account due to the fraudulent transaction. He also called up the CEN Police Station and registered a complaint. “The complaint was registered within 15 to 20 minutes of the crime and the CEN Police also sent me the FIR copy which I handed over to my bank and the jurisdictional Hebbal Police Station. On Nov. 16, the Police managed to block the fraudster’s account to which money from my bank account was credited. Rs. 14,400 was reversed to my account before the conman could move my money to another account or withdraw it,” Dhiraj Kumar added.
Call these numbers
The general public may reach out to these numbers to report online frauds
- CEN Police Inspector 94808-02263
- CEN Police Station 0821-2418598
- Cyber Crime Helpline 1930