Buying an iPhone at a discounted rate cost a 29-year-old Parel resident Rs 8.8 lakh after he fell prey to a cyber fraud. The victim came across an advertisement of the iPhone being available for half the price. He was lured to take up the offer and eventually ended up losing eight times more money.
The incident took place in the last week of August when the victim, who works in a private firm at Fort, saw an advertisement of an IPhone 11 pro on Facebook. The victim was attracted by the discounted price of Rs 50,000 when the market price of the phone is Rs 1 lakh. He clicked on the link but was diverted to his whatsApp where he received a proposal to buy an Iphone from an unknown number.
“First they asked for Rs 2,000 as a booking charge. They offered me to sell the phone for Rs 45,000. I paid instantly," said the victim. Soon he received a confirmation on his email ID saying the phone will be dispatched soon.
The victim then waited for a couple of days but he didn't receive the phone. The fraudsters then asked him to transfer money to their other accounts and claimed that they just can't sell the Iphone for such low price and needed to show a transaction, they assured him that all money except initial payment of Rs 45,000 will be refunded to him. The victim continued to pay them for various charges including GST, TDS and so on.
After paying some Re 4-5 lakh, the victim refused to pay further. The fraudsters changed their tactics. They told him that all his money would be lost if he did not pay further. "While making every payment, they claimed that it was my last transaction. They promised to return my entire money,” said the victim.
After paying Rs 8.8 lakh he realised that he has been duped. He approached the police and filed his complaint. The police have registered an offence under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections of punishment for cheating by personation (419) and cheating (420) along with section 66C (identity theft) 66D (cheating by personation using computer resources) of the Information Technology act and our investigation is currently underway, said an officer from Cuffe Parade police station.