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Capital residents cry debit card fraud

Debit card holders in Ranchi seem to be the latest victims of con men. For, two cases of fraud were reported at Kotwali thana on Wednesday.

In the first, an employee of a cartridge refilling company was conned into parting with his debit card details by an unidentified caller, who later used the information to carry out an online transaction worth Rs 4,000 from his savings account.

In the second case, a colliery worker alleged that his debit card was stolen and Rs 35,000 withdrawn fraudulently from his account.

According to the cartridge company employee Dipak Kumar Gorai, a resident of Mahilong in Namkum, he received a call (from+919546635876) on his mobile around 3.30pm on Wednesday.

The caller, claiming to be a bank official from Mumbai, told Gorai that it was a routine verification exercise. He then asked him for personal details — his full name, debit card number, expiry date, highly sensitive CVV number (a three digit code printed on the back side of the card) and lastly, personal identification number (PIN).

“I was initially reluctant to part with my debit card PIN, but the caller managed to convince me that he it was routine verification and I had nothing to worry. The conversation lasted for less than three minutes,” Gorai said.

To his horror, Gorai received an SMS at 3.35pm that Rs 4,000 had been debited from his savings account (No. 0061010150347) at Hatia branch of United Bank of India.

Banks regularly send text messages to customers asking them never to disclose PIN or passwords to any caller. Gorai’s mistake was that he ignored bank warnings.

“I was near Bihar Club in Kutchery, that falls under Kotwali police station, when I received the SMS. I was taken aback. I rushed to Hatia, about 12km from Kutchery, to find out the reason. Bank officials told me that a purchase had been done from my debit card. The transaction number was PRCR/000000772243/26-02-2014. They, however, could not tell from where the purchasing was done,” Gorai said.

Sensing trouble, he immediately blocked his debit card.

When Gorai approached Kotwali police station on Thursday, he was referred to the technical cell by OC Arwind Kumar Sinha, who did not register his complaint as it was not clear that the fraud was committed in his jurisdiction.

Sinha, however, said: “So far the cell has failed to make a breakthrough in any of the cases forwarded by us.”

But he added that in most cases the debit card users were at fault. “Whenever the cards are issued, banks instruct the holders not to share its PIN or any other detail with anyone in any case. Still people do it, inviting trouble for themselves and for the police,” he added.

The second case was also lodged at Kotwali thana the same day. Ram Vilas Sharma, the worker of Bachra Colliery, alleged that he had lost Rs 35,000 in cyber fraud.

“Sharma claimed that his debit card was swapped with a fake one at an ATM kiosk of Punjab National Bank at Shaheed Chowk where he had gone to withdraw Rs 10,000 on the night of February 24. Someone swapped his card while was busy counting the money. The matter is under investigation,” an officer said.


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