Hyderabad: An increase in the number of cyber crooks using fake identity cards of the Indian Army, the Central Industrial Security Force and other paramilitary forces has prompted these agencies to take to social media and issue warnings, asking the public to be wary while engaging in online transactions.
The CISF, which had taken a similar step last year too, tweeted on Thursday from its official handle, attaching photographs of some of the fake ID cards that were being used by fraudsters to fleece the public.
“CISF wishes to inform that a notable increase has been noticed in online selling using fraudulent methods by unscrupulous elements. These sellers have been found posing as CISF force personnel by displaying fake IDs in order to extract payment from members of the public,” the Force tweeted, adding that members of the public were advised to be careful while entering into any such deal/transactions.
“In case of doubt, please report the matter to the Local Police,” it added.
The warning came after several instances of people being cheated, including in Hyderabad, by fraudsters on popular online buying and selling platforms. The modus operandi was quite simple.
According to officials, the fraudsters lure people into buying used products at quite low prices and demand an advance payment, mostly through UPI channels. To convince the buyer, they would send the fake ID cards, mostly by WhatsApp. There have been instances of many being cheated after being told that the seller was an Army personnel, who was being transferred and hence selling the item.
Once the ‘advance’ is sent online, the phone is switched and there is no response. The now common QR Code scanning trick too has been used in several of the instances reported in Hyderabad.
In July, eight fraudsters from Rajasthan, who allegedly duped people on the pretext of selling vehicles and furniture at cheap prices through online advertisements on e-commerce portals and social media, were arrested by the Cyberabad Police. They had shared ID cards of Army and paramilitary personnel.
Cyber Dost, the cyber-safety and cybersecurity awareness handle maintained by the Ministry of Home Affairs, too has been issuing regular warnings on the same crime, asking people to be wary while shopping online.
Now you can get handpicked stories from Telangana Today on Telegram everyday. Click the link to subscribe.