Account holders of State Bank of India’s (SBI) Hatkesh branch in Kashimira faced a panic situation as more than two dozen debit-card holders fell prey to the evil designs of an automated teller machine (ATM) card cloning gang within a span of four hours on Sunday night.
It has been alleged that after much dillydallying, the police finally registered an FIR under section 420 of the IPC and relevant sections of the Information and Technology Act, against the unidentified culprits on Monday evening.
The complainants were shocked to receive text messages about the withdrawals as the ATM cards were very much in their possession and they had neither disclosed their bank account details, nor shared One Time Passwords (OTP) to anyone. From the messages, it has come to fore that withdrawals ranging from Rs 6,000 to Rs 30,000 were done from ATM’s in Mumbai.
“As of now we have received around 20 complaints of SBI bank account holders, who have collectively lost 14.11 lakh. An FIR has been registered and further investigations were underway,” confirmed Senior Police Inspector Sanjay Hazare. Most of the complainants had transacted from a particular ATM near the bank indicating the involvement of a gang which clones debit/credit cards via skimmer machines.
“After an initial delay, the bank management sensed the gravity of the issue and is now cooperating with us. Hope we get our hard earned money back,” said a complainant.
Bank authorities have been urging customers to change Personal Identification Numbers (PIN) frequently so that the fraudsters cannot keep track of their transaction details. Interestingly all the transactions were effected between 11:30 pm on Sunday to around 3 am on Monday.