Bank account holder? Got this SMS message? Beware! You could lose your money, don't do this
All bank account holders should be cautious all the time as there are constant attempts being made by fraudsters to steal their money and here is one of the biggest methods used by them to steal innocent people's money! The Indian banking system is going through a tricky phase where digital transactions have made life easier for customers but at the same time have also opened them up to frauds through phishing, smishing and more.
The fraudsters have found several ways to fool the customers and rob them of their money. And, one such way is by sending fake text messages or SMS (short message service). The fraudsters target consumers with “phishing” scams via text message or SMS . Such activity is called 'smishing and occurs when deceptive text messages are used to lure consumers into providing their personal or financial information.
Mostly, these smishing messages come in a disguised form where fraudsters impersonate a government agency, bank, or other company to lend legitimacy to their claims. They often ask customers to provide usernames and passwords, credit and debit card numbers, PINs, or other sensitive information. How prevalent is this scam? Well, we recently received a strange SMS directly asking us to provide bank account details for instant transfer of money.
To lure the innocent bank account holders, the message promised to transfer Rs 3.3 lakh to the bank account. "Your A/C can be credited with Rs 330000. Enter your details & check now," read the message. This was followed by a link we were asked to click on. In case you get such message, make sure you don't click on the link provided as it could rob you off your money!
How to stay safe?
First of all, remember that government agencies, banks, and other legitimate companies never ask for personal or financial information. If you ever come across a suspicious message, do not rush to find out what it is in an attempt to get some promised money. Take your time to think and never click the links given in such text messages. Clicking the link may infect your mobile device with a virus or malware designed to steal the personal or financial information stored on the device.
Avoid responding to such messages even if it is to ask the sender to stop contacting you. A reply to such messages confirms that your phone number is active and you open such messages. This means that you may start getting more such text messages in future.
RBI Data on bank account fraud
According to the data released by Reserve Bank of India, the country has been hit by over 50,000 bank frauds in the last 11 fiscal years. The ICICI Bank, State Bank of India (SBI) and HDFC Bank have reported highest number of cases. Of the total 53,334 cases of frauds reported during 2008-09 and 2018-19 fiscal years, involving a whopping Rs 2.05 lakh crore, a highest of 6,811 were reported by the ICICI Bank involving Rs 5,033.81 crore.