Social media has turned into a green field for online fraud. In a shocking instance, the Instagram rails turned out to be the work of a woman restaurant owner from Mumbai’s Worli-Kollywada. He was defrauded of more than crores of rupees. 61000 when he applied for a low-interest futures loan, which he found on Instagram Rails. According to a report of Hindustan TimesRutali Kolge contacted the police on February 23 and filed an incident report.
On February 17, while looking for a loan to expand his business, he came across an ad. Instagram Reels. He clicked on the “Apply” button, which directed him to an online form to fill in his personal details. That same day, he received a call from someone claiming to be Pankaj Singh Bhaduria, a representative of a finance company. He provided an explanation of the terms, tenure, interest rate, and other relevant details and finally convinced him to apply for a loan of Rs. 10 lakh instead of the original amount of Rs. 5 lakhs
Not only this, the person sent an identity card with the company logo to the complainant to verify his identity. He got one. QR code To pay the processing fee. he did. After that, he should have realized there was a problem because the representative told him the payment hadn’t been made. He sent it again and he promised to refund the earlier amount. The fraudster then asked him to pay another amount to complete the loan process. This time she refused and said she would go to the company office instead.
Shockingly, when his family went to check the office at the said location, there was nothing there! That’s when he decided to approach the police.
Precautions to protect yourself from online fraud
- Always be wary of unsolicited messages or, as in this case, unverified ads social media.
- Never respond to messages or friend requests from unknown people as scammers may use fake profiles.
- Always verify before sharing any information, post, or link. Instead, keep your personal information, e.g PAN Card or Aadhaar card, as private as possible.
- Avoid clicking on suspicious links.
- Always make sure to use strong passwords and enable two-factor authentication.
- If you notice any suspicious activity, report it to the Police Cyber Cell immediately.