Fake UPI IDs during coronavirus: Banks, including SBI, HDFC, ICICI, warn customers of online fraudsters in the name of COVID-19 relief

The coronavirus lockdown has reportedly allowed cyber criminals more opportunities to engage in fraudulent activities and dupe people off their finances. They are doing this by making them give out bank details or in some cases, transferring money to false COVID-19 relief accounts.

FP Trending April 13, 2020 16:46:39 IST
Fake UPI IDs during coronavirus: Banks, including SBI, HDFC, ICICI, warn customers of online fraudsters in the name of COVID-19 relief

The coronavirus lockdown has reportedly allowed cyber criminals more opportunities to engage in fraudulent activities and dupe people off their finances. They are doing this by making them give out bank details or in some cases, transferring money to false COVID-19 relief accounts.

The Union Home Ministry had earlier recommended people to follow Cyber Dost Twitter handle and National Cyber Crime Porting Portal - cybercrime.gov.in for info on cyber-crime amid a rise in social media use and online transactions.

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Representational image.

Banks, too, have taken it on themselves to make customers aware of such fraudulent Unified Payment Interface (UPI) IDs.

State Bank of India had tweeted, warning users of fraudulent practices. “Beware of the fake UPI IDs that are making the rounds in the guise of Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance & Relief in Emergency Situations a.k.a. PM Cares. Make sure your monetary donation to fight against the global pandemic is going into the right hands. @PMOIndia #PMCaresFund,” SBI posted.

Axis Bank sent an email to its customers stating that imposters may try to contact bank users to help them postpone their EMI payments and ask for their OTP, CVV, password or PIN related to their banking accounts.

The bank urged customers to stay aware since sharing such details could allow fraudsters to have unwarranted access to one's banking information and lead to the loss of finances.

ICICI Bank sent out an email to its customers saying, “In such a pandemic, when there is a general fear, fraudsters wait for an opportunity like this to break into the systems using different fraudulent methods.”

The bank urged customers to check if the sender’s email address looks different from their display name and check if the email contains attachment or creates some type of urgency or is asking reply or act immediately.

ICICI also asked customers to look if the mail has spelling mistakes or has grammatical errors or is unprofessionally drafted and verify if the mail is send from unknown source/person or mail has unknown URLs.

HDFC issued a series of tweets to increase awareness on EMI moratorium frauds and educate general public on ways to keep money safe from fraudsters.

“It is important for all to note: @HDFC_Bank will never ask for your #OTP, #NetBanking/#MobileBanking password, #CustomerID, UPI PIN for deferring your #EMI payments,” the bank tweeted.

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