A 55-year-old man recently became a target of power bill fraud, losing ₹3.50 lakh in seven transactions. The victim, a Palghar resident, received a deceptive phone call on October 30, claiming that the light bill for his flat had not been updated.
While the victim was away, the scammer called, insisting that the updating work needed to be done immediately. The fraudster then sent a malicious file via WhatsApp, instructing the victim to download it and await further directions.
Deceptive tactics unveiled
Following the scammer's instructions, the victim downloaded an app on his phone. The scammer then coerced the victim into making a ₹2 transaction, purportedly as part of the bill update process. Subsequently, the victim was asked to share his Aadhar Card details and an OTP appearing on his phone.
Growing suspicious, the victim refrained from sharing the OTP and turned off his phone. It was later discovered that the scammer had siphoned ₹3.50 lakh from the victim's bank account in seven unauthorized transactions. Realizing he had been duped, the victim promptly reported the incident to the police, leading to the registration of a case.
The police have filed charges under sections 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) of the Indian Penal Code and 66C (identity theft) and 66D (cheating by personation using a computer resource) of the Information Technology Act.