25 May 2021
As the situation of uncertainty amid covid19 has created a lot of unrest among the people, there is another challenge seeing into the eyes of the vulnerable and not so vigilant mobile & internet users. In a recently released survey report by Norton revealed that 59% of Indian adults have dealt with cybercrime in the last 12 months. That took almost 1.3 billion hours in trying to resolve those issues. Almost 66% of Indian adults are worried of becoming a cybercrime victim.
Amid all this, Airtel’s CEO Gopal Vittal has sent an email to customers sounding them of the possible cyber frauds and how to tackle them. Further, he also pressed upon the immediate actionables that customers must do to safeguard themselves. With the growing second wave of the pandemic and lock downs in various parts of the country, there has been a massive increase in online transactions. Unfortunately, there has also been a corresponding increase in Cyber fraud.
He has listed two clear ways in which the fraudsters operate: The first one being fraudsters calling customers pretending to be Airtel employees and duping them. The modus operandi they use is EKYC (Know Your Customer) claiming that they are calling from Airtel and requests the customer to install the “Airtel Quick Support” app from the Google Play store to allow him to help. No such app exists and the customers get redirected to Team Viewer app that gives access to fraudsters remotely. Similar cases for VIP numbers which Airtel does not sell on the phone and will never ask you to download any third-party apps. In both instances, please immediately call 121 to confirm.
In second case, cyber frauds are related to digital payments: Due to the increase in digital payments, cyber frauds related to payments are also increasing. These further takes two forms:
o OTP – The fraudster calls the customer claiming to be from a bank/financial institution and asks for account details or an OTP to unblock/renew the existing bank account. The details are used to withdraw money from the customer’s bank account
o UPI Collect – The fraudster calls the customer pretending to buy a second-hand listed product from the website, negotiates the price and asks for the customer’s UPI details to transfer money to the customer’s account. On the customer providing the account, an SMS link is sent to the customer’s phone to approve the transaction which debits the money from the account instead of crediting.
How can you secure your online transactions?
Airtel has worked relentlessly to ensure that you are not vulnerable to these fraudsters. This is why the organisation has recently introduced an industry-first feature called “Safe Pay”.
Avoiding fraud by using Safe Pay: This is simply the safest method of paying online in the country. It provides an additional layer of security for every transaction. So before you actually make a payment, our network intelligence throws up a message asking you to confirm the transaction to the person who is trying to pull the fraud. Therefore, if you activate Airtel Safe Pay, you are not vulnerable to fraudsters. To be on Airtel Safe Pay you need to open an Airtel Payments bank account. To open an account or to enable Safe Pay on your existing account click here