With SIM swaps increasing, in a recent incident, a man posing as mobile service provider Airtel’s employee duped a Pune resident into disclosing his SIM card’s information and then stole 93.5 lakh rupees from his bank account.
The victim, Dinesh Kukreja is a 49-year-old man who lives in Katraj, Pune. He filed a complaint in the Bharti Vidyapeeth police station, Pune after the incident. As per Hindustan Times, Inspector (Crime) of the police station, Vishnu Tamhane said that the caller posed as an Airtel employee and asked the victim to share his SIM information or his SIM card will stop working. After sharing details of his SIM card linked to his bank account, he later came to know that 93.5 lakh has been transferred from his account.
The caller asked Kukreja to send an SMS that he received to caller’s mobile number to avoid deactivation. Using the details in the SMS, the caller deactivated the SIM card in Kukreja’s phone. The accused then got a new SIM card issued with Kukreja’s mobile number which gave him access to the linked bank account.
A case under section 419 (punishment for cheating by personation), 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) of Indian Penal Code and Section 66(a)(d) of the Information Technology Act has been registered against unknown people at the Bharti Vidyapeeth Station.
Tamhane urged citizens not to share any private information or one time passwords (OTP) with unknown callers. Tamhane further added that no bank authorities ask for personal details on call.
The Logical Indian take
SIM swap frauds are increasing in the country. Earlier this year in July, a Delhi-based man lost Rs 13 lakh after a group of gangsters swapped his SIM and stole the money. How SIM swaps work is that the fraudster would give you a call and ask you to verify your phone number and threaten you that if you do not give your details, your numbers will be deactivated. After you give your details, your SIM connection would be lost for a while. During that time, as the SIM swap would be complete, they would take all your money from your bank account registered with that SIM. Please beware and never share your confidential details with any stranger on the phone.