Maharashtra cyber cell sets up web portal for reporting phishing complaints

Mumbai: The Maharashtra cyber cell has set up a first-of-its kind dedicated web portal for reporting phishing complaints. The anti-phishing unit was established a month ago to help report, resolve, curb and spread awareness against phishing. Even before its launch, in its beta testing mode, over 200 complaints were registered on the website and a 93 per cent complaints were repressed by the anti-phishing unit.

According to senior cyber officials, the beta mode web portal was inaugurated by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis in March. The main trigger for setting up a full-fledged anti-phishing portal was to help cyber officials act quickly on the complaints and freeze accounts of the fraudsters who received the money.

The portal, www.reportphishing.in, aims to bring all the agencies like banks, payment gateways and telecom service providers under one roof. According to the rules, if a victim approaches the bank within 24 hours of the crime, the bank is liable to help the victim. If the complaint is delayed, the bank can brush off their responsibility and the victim risks losing his/her money.

“Often the delay is caused by agencies for initiating action. Now, the banks and telecom service providers are bound to redress the complaint and resolve it,” said Brijesh Singh, Special Inspector General of Police, Maharashtra Cyber Cell. However, IGP Singh clarified, the portal acts as a complaint redressal platform and is not a First Information Report (FIR), which would call for police action into the matter.

After phishing accounted for half the cyber crimes across the world in 2018, it was only a matter of time an anti-phishing unit was set up. “Maharashtra is the first state to create this portal. This unit acts like a first-aid to take timely action to be secure in future,” Singh said.

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