NEW DELHI: Some web addresses — or URLs as they are called — may appear to be absurdly long. But not any longer, thanks to URL shorteners. They take long URLs and shorten them to make them easier to remember for the recipient.
Short URLs have numerous advantages, including the ability to track performance, they also use fewer characters, result in a higher click-through rate, and they drive traffic back to our websites.
However, there are some drawbacks, too. URL shorteners are frequently used by online fraudsters to trick users into clicking on a link that will compromise their systems, steal money from their bank accounts, or even trick them into mining cryptocurrency without their knowledge.
Recipients may be directed to a spoofing page or click a malware link (short links) where the victim’s sensitive information may be recorded and later used to steal sensitive data or money.
A Few Fraud-Prevention Tips
• All emails and SMS should be verified and validated. Check carefully because fraudsters frequently send fake/spoofed SMS and emails to gain the victim’s trust.
• Never click on short links sent by unknown senders via SMS or other Messengers.
• Contact the company using the email or instant messenger listed on the App or website, or credit/debit cards.
• Neither bank officials nor reputable e-commerce platforms request sensitive financial information such as credit card numbers, OTPs, bank account numbers, net banking credentials, UPI PINs, and so on.
• Don’t pay in advance for courier fees, processing fees, duty fees, customs fees, and so on.
• Verify the seller’s or buyer’s credentials, such as name, website, address, phone number, and so on.
• Transfer money only after you have received the goods, and only through recommended payment methods of reputable e-commerce platforms.
• Fraudsters intentionally deposit more money than the actual negotiated price of a product and, under the guise of refunding, swindle money from sellers by requesting that they scan QR codes or send UPI or OTP/Password.
• Never transfer money over the phone.
• You do not need to scan QR codes or share OTP to receive money.
Complaint Procedure Via 155260 or 1930.
Victims can contact the State Cybercrime Police wings via the dedicated support number 155260 or 1930.
The cybercrime officer takes down the caller’s fraud transaction details (A/C number, Wallet, UPI, Transaction ID, Date, Card Details, etc.) and other basic personal information before submitting a request on the portal.
Requests are routed to Banks, Wallets, and Merchants based on whether they are the victim’s bank or the bank/wallet into which the defrauded money has been transferred.
An SMS is also sent to the victim with the complaint’s acknowledgement number and instructions to submit full details of the fraud on the portal within 24 hours using the acknowledgement number.
The bank can view the request details on the Reporting Portal and check/validate the information within its systems. If the victim’s funds are still available, the bank places them on hold. If the victim’s funds have been transferred to another bank, the request is forwarded to the next bank.
This procedure is repeated until the money is found and transferred back to the victim’s bank account.
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