Retired IB officer loses ₹7.35L in electricity bill payment scam | Mumbai news - Hindustan Times

Retired IB officer loses 7.35L in electricity bill payment scam

ByManish K Pathak
Nov 16, 2023 07:38 AM IST

A retired Intelligence Bureau officer in Mumbai fell victim to a cyber fraud after receiving a message about unpaid electricity bills. He lost ₹7.35 lakh after clicking on a link sent by the fraudster and attempting to pay the bill. The fraudster gained access to the victim's bank account and made multiple transactions. The victim has filed a case with the police.

Mumbai: A 72-year-old retired officer of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) fell in the trap of cyber fraud’s message of unpaid electricity bills and ended up losing 7.35 lakh. The cyber fraud sent a link asking the victim to pay the electricity bill. The victim found a technical glitch in opening the link on his phone so he shared the same link on his wife’s phone and as soon as he opened the link and tried to pay the bill he received messages of three transactions 5 lakh, 2 lakh and 35,000 from her bank account.

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HT Image

According to the police, the complainant, Raghunath Karambedkar, 72, a retired section officer from IB lives in the Navghar area in Mulund East along with his wife and son. He claims that on November 9 around 3.30pm he received a message on his mobile phone that ‘Dear customer your electricity power will be disconnected by tonight 9.46pm. Last month the bill was not updated. Immediately contact our officer Devesh Joshi 09529720232.

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The victim spoke to Devesh Joshi, who introduced himself to be an employee of Mahavitaran and said he had paid the bill Joshi said his paid bill had not been reflected on the website.

The suspect sent a link on Karambedkar’s mobile asking him to open and check his bill. The victim tried to open the link but due to some technical reason, the link did not open. So he shared the link on his wife’s phone and opened the link and mentioned the consumer number and his wife’s name. The victim followed the instructions and as per the direction of the suspect he paid 5 through the link, mentioned in the FIR.

The complainant received messages of pre-closing of her fixed deposit of 5 lakh and 2 lakh and a third message received about 35,000 debited from her savings account for online shopping. The accused had taken access of the victim’s bank account and transferred money in different bank accounts by pre-closing fixed deposits of 5 lakh, 2 lakh in her bank account and online shopping of 35,000, said a police officer.

After receiving the message, the victim immediately contacted the bank and later approached the Navghar police station and a case was registered against an unknown person for cheating and impersonation along with sections of the Information Technology Act.

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