Rising cyber fraud is a cause for concern in Chandigarh, seniors are prime targets

Hira Lal Mahajan, a 57-year-old hotelier, was sitting in his office in December last year when he received a call on his smartphone asking him to update his Know Your Customer (KYC) information. ) to avoid termination of its HDFC. Bank account. Mahajan agreed to do so and clicked on the link the caller sent him to update his KYC.

He was then asked to share three OTPs he had received. When he shared the passwords, Rs 9.99 lakh was transferred from his account in three separate transactions.

Jagbir Singh Dhillon, a 75-year-old retired commander of the Border Security Force (BSF), was duped for Rs 9.99 lakh in the same modus operandi a few days later. He received a call, where he was asked to update his KYC information to avoid termination of the Airtel SIM card linked to his bank account. However, during this incident, the caller instructed Dhillon to download and use “Anydesk”, an application that allows another user to view and interact with another computer system over the Internet. The caller used the app to acquire Dhillon’s bank details.

Mahajan and Dhillon are not the only two victims of phishing, with cases increasing at a worrying rate in Chandigarh.

Citizens over the age of 50 appear to be prime targets as most of them are not tech-savvy and vulnerable to a subtle threat of termination of a particular service.

“People between the ages of 50 and 75 are the most prone to this nature of cybercrimes. We have observed online fraudsters deliberately targeting people in this age group. Apart from them, illiterate and less educated people who lack the knowledge to use their smartphones are also prime targets,” Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) (cyber) Rashmi Yadav Sharma said.

Another resident of Sector 18 lost Rs 10 lakh in February last year after she was asked to share her credit card OTP and PIN.

“There are many reasons why people, especially those in their 50s and 75s, are the most vulnerable. They’re close to retirement age, aren’t tech-savvy, and don’t know what to share about their bank details; It’s good that seniors are embracing digital methods of monetary transactions, but they need to be educated about digital modes of transactions,” said RK Garg, President of the Second Innings Association.

The association had recently organized an awareness workshop for seniors with the UT cyber cell to raise awareness of the different types of cybercrime and what can be done to avoid falling prey to phishing.

At least 394 out of a total of 1,286 cybercrime complaints received at the Cyber ​​Crime Cell between January 1 and March 24 were related to fraudulent transactions where complainants were asked to share their debit card/ credit and their PIN code.

“Our big concern is financial fraud, which is increasing with every passing day. And this nature of crime will increase in the future as more and more people start relying on online transactions and banking without adopting the necessary safeguards,” said DSP (cyber) Rashmi Yadav Sharma.

How to save from phishing

Here are some suggestions from the Head of Cyber ​​Cell Faculty at Central Detective Training School (CDTS), Sector 36,

Gurcharan Singh:

– Avoid sharing bank account details with strangers directly or over the phone
– If you have been deceived, immediately call the green number ‘1930’
-If you do not receive a response from your bank after reporting fraud, contact the RBI Banking Ombudsman, Sector 17.
– Learn about online banking and transactions before using online banking.

Donald E. Patel