Arvind Kejriwal’s daughter, Harshita Kejriwal, has reportedly become a victim of a cyber crime. Harshita has filed a complaint with the Civil Lines Police Station after losing a sum of Rs 34,000 while trying to sell a couch on an e-commerce platform. The cyber criminal apparently duped Arvind Kejriwal’s daughter using the highly notorious QR code method with the aid of which Harshita first lost Rs 20,000, and then Rs 14,000. Coincidentally, it also happens to be Safe Internet Day.
What is a QR Code Scam, and How Does it Work?
OLX has warned its users about the potential cyber fraud techniques commonly used by cyber criminals. A QR code scam involves the cyber criminal posing as a buyer who is interested in the product posted by the victim. The fraudster then engages with the victim pretending to be interested in their product and then shares a QR code to pay an advance or token amount. A QR code displaying the amount will be created by the fraudster and shared with the victim over email or WhatsApp.
After sharing the QR code, the cyber criminal will ask the victim to select the “Scan QR code” option on the app and select QR code from the photo gallery. After scanning the code, the victim will be asked to proceed with the payment and then enter a PIN upon which money get deducted from the account. Users should know that QR codes can never be used to debit an amount into their accounts, and therefore be aware that this is a commonly used cyber scam method.
Other Common Frauds that Take Place on e-Commerce Platforms
Apart from QR code, UPI payment link scam is also a commonly employed method to scam users. Consumers need to be aware that messages requesting PIN, and One Time Passwords, and messages that includes words like send, requested by, pay are all fraudulent and meant to deduct cash from the victim’s account. Users should never send PIN or OTP, and should stop engaging with the buyer upon receiving such messages.
Arvind Kejriwal’s Daughter Duped, How to Avoid Such Situations
If Arvind Kejriwal’s daughter can get duped, users should know that the tactics employed by scammers sometimes seem genuine. However, the following are some of the situations, according to OLX, that indicate red flags while buying or selling items online:
- The buyer asks for PIN, OTP, or sends messages that seem fake.
- Fraudsters ask for items to be sent without payment and promise to send cash once the product is delivered.
- QR code is sent as a payment method.
- The buyer insists on paying through a cheque, which can bounce later.
- Personal information of the seller such as bank account number, debit or credit card number, and so on is asked.
- The buyer is in a hurry to buy the product and make payment.