Mumbai: A 87-year-old man lost Rs8.66 lakh in a span of minutes in seven different transactions after falling prey to power bill fraud. According to the police, the complainant is a resident of Jogeshwari. On Sunday around 1:15pm, the victim received a text message on his phone informing that his last electricity bill had not been updated and hence his house’s power supply would be disconnected.
Fraudster lures victim by asking him to pay a small amount
The message also contained the mobile number of an ‘electricity officer’ and directed the receiver to contact the officer for further queries. A worried victim then contacted the said number and informed that he had paid his bill. The ‘officer’ then told the victim that his bill payment is not reflected in the system. He then asked the victim to make a payment of Rs100 which the ‘officer’ said would be adjusted in the next bill.
The fraudster then asked the victim to download a remote access application on his phone and asked him to share a code that he had received on his phone. The victim followed the instructions after which OTPs and transaction alert messages began to come on his phone and after getting suspicious, the victim disconnected the call. The victim then called his bank and asked them to block his account.
The victim had received seven transaction messages and had lost Rs 8.66 lakh from his account. He then approached the police and got an offence registered under Sections 419 (cheating by personation), 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) of the Indian Penal Code and sections 66C (identity theft) and 66D (cheating by personation by using computer resource) of the Information Technology Act.