Mumbai: Policeman loses USD 6,013 after falling prey to online fraud, files case

A policeman lost INR 5 lakhs (USD 6,013) after being duped by scammers online. The victim has been identified as Kherwadi Police Inspector Hemant Gurav (51), who lost the money during a fraudulent KYC (know your customer) update.

On January 3, Gurav lodged an FIR against two unidentified individuals at the Kherwadi police station.

According to police reports, Gurav, stationed at the Kherwadi police station and residing in Mhada Colony, Tilak Nagar in Mumbai, received a call around 1 p.m. while on duty.

The caller, from an unidentified number, claimed that Gurav’s KYC details needed updating, suggesting that his account would be suspended otherwise. Concerned about his monthly home loan EMI deductions from Axis Bank, Gurav complied with the caller’s instructions, fearing potential payment disruptions.

Scammer posed as customer service executive

The fraudster instructed Gurav to download an ‘apk.file’ application and enter various personal and banking details as directed, which he followed.

Subsequently, the caller instructed Gurav to dial *401*9007721733 for purported customer service assistance. However, the call failed to connect. As Gurav engaged in a video call with the scammer, he received consecutive notifications from Axis Bank, indicating withdrawals of INR 1,11,000 and INR 3,89,000 from his account.

Realising the scam, Gurav promptly visited his Axis Bank branch in Kherwadi and froze both of his accounts. He subsequently filed a case against the two unidentified individuals under sections 34 (common intention), 419 (cheating), and 420 (cheating and dishonestly) of the Indian Penal Code, in addition to relevant provisions of the Information Technology Act.

(The article is published under a mutual content partnership arrangement between The Free Press Journal and Connected to India)