Mira Bhayandar: Gift card scam now targeting cops

The cyber cell has urged people to report any such demand for gift vouchers by anyone misusing the photograph and name of the commissioner on WhatsApp.

Suresh GolaniUpdated: Saturday, August 06, 2022, 04:45 PM IST
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After targeting the common citizens, cybercriminals are now trying to trap police officials with fake WhatsApp messages. The Public Relation Office (PRO) of the Mira Bhayandar-Vasai Virar (MBVV) police has urged citizens to remain alert when they receive any messages seeking money or gift vouchers from fake WhatsApp accounts.

The alert was sounded after it was detected that some unscrupulous elements had created a WhatsApp account on the mobile number '7080669933' with the uniformed photograph of MBVV chief Sadanand Date as the "displayed picture" (DP) to send out messages to random numbers and police officers with an intention of initiating a conversation and dupe money under the pretext of seeking gift vouchers.

Notably, several officers, including a station-in-charge have received such messages from the said number seeking gift vouchers and their links following a brief conversation.

An offence under sections 170 (impersonating a public servant), 419 (cheating by personation), 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property) and relevant sections of the Information Technology Act, 2000 has been registered against the unidentified accused at the Bhayandar police station for seeking five Amazon gift vouchers worth Rs 10,000 each from the senior police inspector, Mira Bhayandar.

Patil himself is the complainant in the case. The officer was surprised after receiving messages from an unknown number on WhatsApp with the profile picture of the commissioner. The police have launched a detailed probe into the matter to track and nab the culprit.

The cyber cell has urged people to report any such demand for gift vouchers by anyone misusing the photograph and name of the commissioner on WhatsApp.

The MBVV police have also appealed to citizens to approach the local police station or log in to www.cybercrime.gov.in or call the cybercrime cell on 1930 to report any type of online fraud.

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