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Cyber Crime

Cyber Victim’s Shocking Story: ICICI Bank Account Emptied by Fraudsters



Cybercriminals have been pretending to be from a courier company / Law Enforcement Agency falsely claiming to have discovered illegal activities related to the victim.

These cybercriminals then threaten the victim with a police inquiry and arrest. The victim, out of fear of legal consequences, falls prey to such cybercriminals and does as directed. However, Banks have not been taking note of these serious frauds and allowing nodal licences to cybercriminals where they can do high-value transactions in one go.
Here’s a recent case of the Gurugram-based victim Yogesh Sharma:

The incident happened on Sunday,19th May ’24, after two days when Yogesh came back from Bangalore. Got an IVR call at 2 pm which stated that it was from TRAI and got the following message  “your phone number will be blocked in some time to know the reason and details press 9.”

Here is the complete narration of the fraud by the victim:

I clicked on 9 to know the reason, and then the person on the other side claimed himself as a TRAI executive (Arjun Gupta) and informed me that there was an FIR against my phone number which is associated with my Aadhar Number.

I asked for more details and they shared the name of the person who filed the FIR for receiving Illegal advertising and harassing texts along with the FIR number.

Post my request to know more and not to block my number he asked to take the clarification letter from the concerned Delhi Police station and then transfer the call to Delhi police.

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One lady picked up the call and asked few case details and then checked my details through my Aadhar number and claimed that my HDFC account which was dormant 4 years ago involved in money laundering and they had detained Sandeep Kumar who was the HDFC Branch head shared your bank account details and you have taken commission also to use your bank account.

Unfortunately, I don’t remember my bank account number and the internet banking credentials of HDFC, so I trusted them and thought they had used my dormant account for illegal activities.

Then she shared 2 reports (the CBI Report under my name & Sandeep Kumar fraud case report) and asked me to give a recorded statement if I’m not involved in this case, Court is not operational due to Sunday so conducted the virtual hearing and then I have to present myself on Delhi Court during the working day. So, they asked me to come on Skype, where they shared their handle name with Delhi Police along with Icon and then a video call started where I saw a lady in Police uniform with a proper cabin, and she asked for all my details and visits.

Fake reports shared by cybercriminals:

After having 2 hours of call, she transferred this call to the CBI Director who was also in the Police Uniform with a proper name placed on the table, asked multiple questions and threatened to freeze all my account details till court proceedings were there.

I asked him not to freeze my account details then he asked me to transfer the funds to the Nodal account of the CBI and share ICICI bank account details.

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In this fraction I transferred funds, and they asked me to stay on call till we complete the hearing process, but after 15 minutes, I realised that I was fooled, and disconnected the call. I quickly blocked my account details with ICICI and asked ICICI Customer support to block that ICICI account also, parallelly filed an online complaint to Cyber cell.

Three things concerning me about the bank transfer:

  1. How come ICICI opened the Current account of these fraudsters, didn’t they check the company and KYC of the account holders?
  2. How can a bank transfer such a huge amount of funds to a new beneficiary within 24 hours?
  3. I didn’t receive any confirmation call from ICICI which I usually receive for a 50K transfer.

Certainly, Banks are not fraud proof and letting their customers get conned at ease. Regulators should look into these high level cybercrimes and keep banks accountable as well. We hope no one else falls prey to such cyber frauds after reading this report.

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