Electricity Bill Scam: 392 Mobiles Blocked, DoT Orders Re-verification of 31,740 Mobile Connections Linked with Fraud
Moneylife Digital Team 18 June 2024
Coming down heavily on fraudsters who used the 'electricity bill not paid' excuse to threaten disconnection and extort money from gullible people, the department of telecom (DoT) has directed telecom service providers (TSPs) to block 392 mobile handsets and conduct re-verification of 31,740 connections used in these frauds.
DoT says several citizens reported on its Chakshu portal several cases of fraudsters using SMS and WhatsApp messages related to electricity know-you-customer (KYC) updates and sending malicious Android package kit (APK) files to manipulate and gain control over victims' devices.
DoT utilised the Chakshu portal to analyse fraudulent activities in these reported cases, initially identifying five suspect numbers. The portal's artificial intelligence (AI)-driven analysis revealed that 392 handsets linked to 31,740 mobile numbers were involved in the fraudulent activities carried out in the name of electricity service-providers.
DoT then directed all TSPs for pan India blocking of 392 mobile handsets misused in cybercrime financial frauds based on these devices' international mobile equipment identity (IMEI) numbers. It also directed them to re-verify 31,740 mobile connections linked to these mobile handsets. "Failure in re-verification will result in - immediate disconnection of reported numbers and blocking of associated handsets."
The Chakshu portal helps citizens report suspected fraud communication received over call, SMS, or WhatsApp to defraud like KYC expiry or update of bank account, payment wallet, SIM, gas connection, electricity connection, sextortion, impersonation as a government official or relative for sending money, or threat to disconnect all mobile numbers.
4 weeks ago
Next Possible Scam Could be through So Called Smart Meters for Electricity Power Consumption by Commoners & Hence Need to be Careful.
Kamal Garg
Replied to s5rwav comment 4 weeks ago
In fact, the architecture of a smart meter should be completely temper-proof as in case EVMs. No outside tempering or any other handling should be allowed.
4 weeks ago
Add this mobile No. 81212 58010 from which threatening disconnection sms was received for calling 9038430049. Could not lodge complaint on cyber crime portal b'coz the process was not user friendly.
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