FPJ Special: New Cyber Fraud Scheme 'Zoksa' Leaves Trail Of Victims Across India, Caution Urged

FPJ Special: New Cyber Fraud Scheme 'Zoksa' Leaves Trail Of Victims Across India, Caution Urged

Collectively, these victims may have lost more than 5 crores.

Aishwarya IyerUpdated: Sunday, March 17, 2024, 07:49 PM IST
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After the Free Press Journal reported about the new cyber fraud in place, where victims are lured into making hefty investments with an institutional trading platform called ‘Zoksa’, it is now known that at least 25 new victims have emerged, pan-India. Collectively, these victims may have lost more than 5 crores. 

Details of fraud

The modus operandi in this particular fraud is that a man named Azim Singh, who is addressed as ‘Teacher’, also claims to have expert knowledge in stocks and share investments. Singh and his gang members start by providing ‘tips’ to interested customers on the stock market, and the right places of investments – which is when Zoksa is introduced. As per Zoksa’s website, which is inactive now, it is based in Texas, USA, but has no documentation or verification by SEBI, which allows it to operate as an investment agency in India, as per the government’s guidelines. 

Similarly, Zoksa also had its mobile application for Android and iOS users but it has also been discontinued. Currently, Singh and others lure victims via social media platforms, who are then added to either WhatsApp groups or Telegram groups where the interaction takes place. 
In Mumbai, the first case of Zoksa was reported to Dadar police by a school teacher and she had lost over Rs. 6.7 lakhs in the investment cyber fraud. Gradually, more victims emerged who alleged similar experiences and MO by the same ‘teacher’ Azim Singh. The victims are from across the country, and the FPJ spoke to some to know their case. 

Many fell victim to the scheme

Thirty-eight-year-old Harsha T, a single mother from Banglore lost over Rs 25 lakhs in the scheme. A cancer survivor, Harsha was first intrigued by the ‘scheme’ and even borrowed money to invest and pay the taxes, but later realized she was scammed by the fraudsters. Currently, on antidepressants, Harsha awaits progress by the police. 

39-year-old B. Pawan from Madhya Pradesh lost Rs. 45 lakhs. He was told to invest with Zoksa since the Indian stock market won’t garner hefty profit and believing the same, he started by investing Rs. 30,000. Pawan saw Zoksa’s app on the Apple store where the comments were flooded with positive reviews about high-end profits, which gained his trust to invest more money in the forefront. He has filed a complaint with cyber police, but no progress has been made yet. 

43-year-old Sujata from Pune lost Rs. 20 lakhs, and she was introduced to Zoksa via Instagram. Unaware of the fraud Azim allegedly is, she says she kept asking for ‘advice’ from him and believing everything, she kept investing money. 

34-year-old Shalu J. from Delhi was introduced to a woman named Manali, and as per Shalu, she was treated like a sister, who would advise on investments. “It was like we had some trust bond, or that she (Manali) created one to gain the trust,” says Shalu, who lost over Rs. 26.7 lakhs in the fraud. Shalu, who has two kids, is now struggling financially to even pay the school fees. A case has been registered with Delhi Police, but she is awaiting progress. 

Pankaj Kumar from Madhya Pradesh lost Rs. 22.5 lakhs in the aforesaid fraud. Suhaib S, a 38-year-old man, originally from Mumbai, but currently lives in Visakhapatnam for work, lost Rs. 50 lakhs in the scheme. Intrigued by the investment results, Suhaib ended by selling gold with hopes of getting enough money to live a comfortable life. However, today, he is struggling with money for even basic utilities. He has registered a complaint with Andhra Pradesh police, but the FIR is still in progress. 

A 42-year-old man from Borivali, who works in the insurance vertical market, lost over Rs. 27 lakhs in the Zoksa investment fraud. Like others, he was told about high-profit margins and was also provided with some returns in the beginning before they stopped paying but kept making him invest further. The victim has submitted a complaint to the Mumbai cyber police but the FIR is still in progress. 

Formal FIR not registered in all cases

In all the cases, police have not registered a formal FIR which reflects the negligence on their part. While these victims have given up on the hope of getting their money back, their only wish is to stop the fraud and put the fraudsters behind bars for manipulating and defrauding hundreds or perhaps more victims across the country.

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