Matunga police arrest Jharkhand school principal for cyber fraud
Manjit Kumar Arya is also accused of training local youth in cyber-crimes. In his phone, the police have found banking details of over seven lakh customers of the State Bank of India and the HDFC Bank.
Mumbai. The Matunga police arrested the principal of a public school in Jharkhand, who is allegedly a master cyber fraud and has targetted at least 3,600 individuals. He is also accused of training local youth in cyber-crimes. In his phone, the police have found banking details of over seven lakh customers of the State Bank of India and the HDFC Bank.
The accused, Manjit Kumar Arya, 31, is the principal of a district council school in Devghar and is a resident of Bilasi. The cyber cell of Matunga police comprising assistant police inspector Digambar Pagar, police naik Santosh Pawar and constable Mangesh Namhad, recently, arrested Arya from his home and brought him to Mumbai.
The police have seized SIM cards, a laptop, bank cheque book, and six debit cards from him. “We are trying to find out how he managed to get the database of over seven lakh customers of the two banks,” said a police officer. Police also found out that Arya has prior record of cyber-crime and was out on bail.
Police officials said Arya conducted online classes to train others in cyber frauds. He is also accused of providing SIM cards and fraudulently-obtained bank accounts to other cyber frauds for a hefty commission.
Police arrested Arya while probing a complaint lodged by Vasant Chheda, a 64-year-old Matunga East resident. Chheda had stated that he lost ₹1.09 lakh to a cyber fraud in which he had received an SMS from “bank” with a link. After he submitted his details on that link, the amount from his account was diverted through fraudulent transactions on December 25, 2022.
While probing Chheda’s case, the police first arrested three people from Delhi and Jharkhand and found out that Arya had groomed them and that he was also involved in the particular crime.
“His modus operandi was to defraud people by sending them an SMS informing them that their access to bank account has been blocked for non-submission of KYC and if they wish to get back the access, they would have to update their PAN number by clicking in the given link,” said an officer from Matunga police station.
“The link would redirect the customer to a webpage, where they were asked to fill up their banking details. Using these details, Arya would carry out fraudulent transactions.”
According to the police, Arya would get device mirroring links prepared by a computer programmer and send the same to unsuspecting people along with SMSes that looked like messages originating from their bankers, informing the customers to update KYC or update details and diverted money from their accounts using these details.
“Arya would buy these links for ₹2,000 each from programmers and sell the same, to other fraudsters he trained, for ₹5,000. These frauds would use these links to get banking details from people and then carry out fraudulent transactions,” said API Pagar.
Police’s background check on Arya revealed that he was named in a cyber fraud case by the Ranchi cyber police and was out on bail. It was also revealed that he was involved in at least eight more cyber-frauds registered with the National Cyber Crime Reporting (NCCR) Portal.