A 33-year-old MBA graduate and 36-year-old software engineer set up the cybercrime hub in one bedroom. They formed the nameless private enterprise two years ago and hired the two youngsters as employees. The police revealed that the fraudsters moved Rs 854 crore rapidly through 84 bank accounts in the last two years. They were using eight mobile phones active during the day and night for their malicious operations. This bad actors group came in the eyes of the police when a 26-year-old woman filed a complaint, she was lured and cheated for Rs 8.5 lakh on the pretext of making small investments for high returns. It led to cyber crime police on their doorstep. The police discovered that they were operating a massive cyber fraud network from that single room, targeting a large number of people for committing cyber fraud through offering investment schemes and luring innocent people.
How cybercrime fraudsters lured the victims?
The Bangalore police have busted a cyber fraud scam worth 854 Crore rupees. And police have arrested 6 accused. These bad actors illegally deceived numerous victims on the pretext of investment schemes. The gang used to lure them through WhatsApp and Telegram. Initially, the people were asked to invest small amounts, promising daily profits ranging from 1 thousand to 5 thousand rupees. As the trust grew, thousands of victims indulged in investments ranging from 1 lack to 10 lack rupees. This Money luring modus operandi was used by the fraudsters to attract them and get the victims to invest more and more. The amount invested by the victims was deposited into various bank accounts by the fraudsters. When the victims tried to withdraw their amount after depositing they were unable to do so. Soon after the amount was received, the accused gang would launder the money and divert it to other accounts.
Be cautious of online investment fraud
It concerns all of us who used to invest online. The Bangalore police have busted cyber crime or cyber investment fraud of 854 crore rupees. The 6 members of the gang that the police have arrested used to approach victims through WhatsApp and telegram to convince them to invest small amounts, from 1 thousand to 10 thousand at the bare minimum and promising them returns or profit amount per day and later lock this amount and diverting it into different bank accounts, ensuring that those get invested never get access to it again. Now, this went on in the country receiving a large number of cases that have been registered from various states in the country.
Advisory and best practices
- It is important to mention that there could be several other cybercrime investment frauds like this that you may not even be aware of. Hence, this incident of massive online investment fraud operated from the IT capital of the country definitely acts as an eye-opener for all of us. We urge people to be cautious and raise the alarm about any such cyber crime or investment fraud that they see in the cyber world today.
- In the age of the internet, where there is a large number of mobile users in the country, and users look for a source of income on the internet and use it to invest their money, it is important to be aware of such fraud and be cautious and take proper precautions before investing in any such online scheme. It is always advisable to invest only in legitimate sources and after conducting due diligence.
- Be cautious and do your research: Whenever you are investing in any scheme or in digital currency, make sure to verify the authenticity or legitimacy of the person or company who is offering such service. Check the reviews, official website, and feedback from authentic sources. Find out whether the agents or brokers who contact you are licensed to operate in your state and are compliant with regulators or other investors.
- Verify the credentials: Check the genuineness by checking the licenses, registration and certification of the person or company offering such services, whether he is authorised or not.
- Be Skeptical of offers which seem to be too good: If it sounds too good, be cautious and inquire about its authenticity, such as unsolicited offers. Be especially careful if you receive an unsolicited pitch to invest in a particular company or see it praised online but if you could not find current financial information about it from independent sources. It could be a fraudulent scheme. It is advisable to compare promised yields with current returns on well-known stock indexes.
- Seek Expert Advice: If you are a beginner in online investment, you may seek advice from reliable resources such as financial advisors who can provide more clarity on aspects of investment and guidance to help you make informed decisions.
- Avoid Unreliable Platforms: Be cautious and stick to authorised established agencies. Be cautious when dealing with a person or company lacking sufficient user reviews and credible security measures.
- Protect yourself online: Protect yourself online. Fraudsters target users on online and social marketing sites and commit various online frauds; hence, it's important to be cautious and protect yourself online. So be cautious and make your own sound decision after all analysis while investing in any such services.
- Report Suspicious Accounts: If you encounter any social media accounts, social media groups or profiles which seem suspicious and engaged in fraudulent services, you must report such profiles to the respective platform immediately.
- Report cyber crimes to law enforcement agencies: A powerful resource available to victims of cybercrime is the National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal, equipped with a 24x7 helpline number, 1930. This portal serves as a centralised platform for reporting cybercrimes, including financial fraud.
This recent cyber investment fraud worth Rs 854 Crore, orchestrated by a group of fraudsters operating from a single room, serves as a stark reminder of the risks posed by bad actors. This incident underscores the importance of being vigilant when it comes to online investments and financial transactions. As we navigate the vast and interconnected landscape of the internet, it is imperative that we exercise due diligence and employ best practices to protect ourselves. We need to be cautious and protected from falling victim to these fraudulent schemes, actively reporting suspicious accounts and cybercrimes to relevant authorities through resources like the National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal will contribute to helping stop these types of cyber crimes. Knowledge and awareness are some of the biggest factors we have in fighting back against such cyber frauds in this digital age and making a safer digital environment for everyone.