As wine and beer shop owners fine tune their arrangements to launch a mechanism for home delivering Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) amidst the lockdown, some fraudsters have already grabbed it as an opportunity to cheat booze seekers. Thanks to the timely alert by his neighbour, a Mira Road resident was saved from becoming a victim of an online fraud on Thursday. Looking for a liquor shop close to his residence on an online search engine, Vinod Pandey (name changed) came across the page of a prominent shop offering doorstep delivery of an array of spirits. It was followed by a page offering online money transfer directly via e-wallets. Luckily, for Sharma, his neighbor arrived just in time and felt something fishy about the offer.
Both cross verified the credentials of the displayed phone numbers and also contacted the real wine shop owner only to find that the advertisement was a trap to lure and cheat desperate tipplers. “Yes, cyber crooks have floated fake advertisements of local wine stores. Apart from approaching the police, our members are also posting cautionary messages to alert customers. As far as home delivery is concerned, once the mechanism is approved by the excise wing, phone numbers will be displayed outside the shop hopefully in 2 to 3 days. Moreover, payment-on-delivery options will be offered to negate any type of fraud.” said a wine shop owner requesting anonymity. After a dry spell of nearly two months, an order was recently issued allowing home delivery of IMFL spirits, beer and wines to drinking permit holders in accordance with a series of guidelines and norms inked by the government authorities for specific zones tagged by the district administration in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.