Fraudsters looking to take beguile you and taking your money in a jiffy are getting innovative by the day.
There have been a lot of cases recently about citizens getting calls on one pretext or the other with an ultimate aim to make you part with your money voluntarily.
The core modus operandi of such frauds rest on certain amount of your private information (like your name, your parents' name, an insurance or pension plan you have, et al) that makes the calls sound legitimate. However, even though data protection in India is still a long time away, this MorningContext story clearly show how data brokers are ready to sell sensitive personal information of millions of Indians to anyone who is willing to pay, no questions asked.
Clearly, one needs to be on their guarded best against such calls and not share any personal information with the callers under any circumstance.
Your bank, too, sends frequent emailers and text messages reminding you of such practices and urges to not share your one-time pins (OTPs) with strictly anyone else – including bank employees.
Reserve Bank of India (RBI), too, regularly uses television media and video advertisements to drive the same message to you – do not share your OTPs, passwords, personal bank details with anyone.
Yet, many misconstrue these calls as true and unknowingly share their personal and bank details with the callers at the other end.
A tweet on April 29, 2022 reiterates how a woman had fallen trap to calls made on the pretext of transferring the amount left in her father’s Combined Provident Fund account to her account. The woman had shared most of her details only to realize that the caller on the other end was not able to answer her questions correctly. The caller fumbled on being asked who she was and introduced herself as someone working with the Integrated Grievance Management System (IGMS). It is only after browsing the web and talking to the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDAI) helpline centre people did the policyholder realize that none of these organizations had any business making calls to people and seeking their details.
What to do?
This is not the first instance of fraud nor it would be the last. Irrespective of how much technology is updated and evolved, scamsters will always try to find a way out to get your details. The only thing that can protect you is your vigilance. Be careful about who you share your details. Note down the numbers from where you receive the calls and make sure to notify the concerned authorities.
Remember, the simplest trick to safeguard yourself is this – under no circumstance should you share your bank details, an OTP or receive payment via a QR code sent to your mobile-phone by such unscrupulous people.
Precaution is always better than cure and a simple act of safeguarding can go a long way in keeping you secure from losing your money. Remember that swindlers are always on the prowl. You never know that you could be their next target.