Delhi Police CyPad busted three illegal call centres, arrest 37 for duping overseas citizens
The accused were running multiple fake processes including Social Security Number scam, Apple Tech Support scam and Amazon Tech Support scam
New Delhi, March 24
The Delhi Police CyPad arrested 37 from three call centres that were allegedly found duping foreigners for over Rs. 10 crores.
The CyPad had received information that certain persons were allegedly found r
committing cybercrime in Bindapur and Janakpuri. The cyber experts conducted a raid where it was found that different accused persons were running illegal call centres in Bindapur (one centre) and Janakpuri (two centres by the same accused).
CyPad DCP Anyesh Roy stated that two separate cases were registered against the scam centres and a total of 37 persons, including managers, supervisors and operators, were arrested, out of which 9 were working at the Bindapur centre and 28 at the Janakpuri centres. A total of 56 desktops and 41 phones have been seized from the three locations.
The CyPad added that the accused were running their scam from a residential area in Asalatpur Village where the buildings had state of the art security systems and all accused were given strict instructions to not park their vehicles near the two neighbouring buildings from which the scam was being run, so as to avoid being noticed.
The officials added that as disclosed by the accused, they have conned thousands of people of over Rs.10 Crore. They were duping and extorting people based in foreign countries in the name of their Social Security Number in which The accused contact foreign nationals based in the US and other countries impersonating various law enforcement agencies and other government agencies such as the Social Security Administration, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the US Marshals Service, etc. and tell them that their bank accounts and other assets are being frozen as their details have been found at a crime scene and there are bank accounts running in their names using which illegal transactions have been made to drug cartels in Mexico and Colombia. They also threatened the victims with immediate arrest.
The officials added that once the victim becomes apprehensive, they give them two options. One is to go for a legal action in which first the victim would be arrested and their assets would be seized and only later on could the victim fight it out in the court. The second option is to go for an Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) which would be faster and simpler. When the victim chooses to go for ADR, they ask them to share all the details of their assets, including bank accounts and the amount of money in those accounts. In the next step, the victim is told that there is only one way to safeguard their assets; they would have to either buy Bitcoins or Google Gift Cards worth all the money in their accounts. If the victim agrees to buy Bitcoins, the accused induce them to convert all the money in their accounts into Bitcoins and transfer the same to the wallets operated by the accused persons, saying that it is a safe government wallet. If the victim agrees to buy Gift Cards, they induce them to share the number of the cards stating that it will be linked to their new bank accounts and thus, be safe.
The victims of the scam operating from Janakpuri centres are people residing in foreign countries. As disclosed by the accused, they have conned thousands of people of more than Rs.five crores. They were duping and extorting people by impersonating Amazon Technical Support team.
Explaining about this scam, CyPad stated that the accused send recorded messages to people in US and Canada impersonating Apple Technical Support team and inducing them to call on the mentioned number for any kind of technical support related to Apple products. When an unsuspecting customer calls on the number, they pretend to be from Apple Technical Support team and take remote access of the devices of the callers. Subsequently, they start scaring them by telling them that their devices have been infected by viruses and compromised. Finally, in the name of cleaning up the devices of the callers, they induce them to make payments of up to thousands of US Dollars through Google Gift Cards or iTunes cards.
The other scam was identified asAmazon technical support scam in which the accused send pre-recorded messages to people based abroad, impersonating the technical support team of Amazon, “informing” them that there has been an unauthorized purchase from their account and that they need to call at the given Toll Free Number or Press 1 to resolve it. Once the unsuspecting customer calls, they cheat and extort them, using the Modus Operandi similar to Apple Technical Support scam, of hundreds, sometimes thousands, of USD. The payment is received in Bitcoins or Gift Cards, so as to remain untraceable.
The investigation found that the accused persons were recruited on the basis of their ability to converse fluently in English and preferably with foreign accent. Most of them are either school dropouts or simple graduates. The pay structure for both the centres was almost identical, also known as the “industry standard”. On an average, each caller (first level of the scam) was paid Rs. 25-30 thousand per month as salary while the Team Leaders and closers ( second level) were paid Rs. 60-75 thousand per month. The salary of the manager was Rs. One lac per month. In addition to this, all employees were paid incentives. For every USD that they managed to scam, the caller got Rs.two and the Team Leader/closer got Rs.four as incentive.
The CyPad is further investigating the case to identify the involvement of others in the scam.
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