Tuesday 26 February 2013

Uttarakhand People Beware of Phone Scams!

Written by Anil Singh

Uttarakhand People Beware of Phone Scams!

With the mobile phone reaching every corner of the country (including Uttarakhand), phone scams in the country have also increased.

Uttarakhand People Beware of these Phone Scams!

What is a Phone Scam:

A typical phone scam involves receiving unsolicited (not asked for) calls or messages on your telephone (land-line telephones and mobiles). The aim of these calls and messages is deceiving (in Hindi 'Dhokha Dena') the receiver with a completely or partially false pitch (marketing speech); and make him/her act on the pitch.

In Simple words if you receive a Phone call or message, trying to sell, subscribe or trying to make you surrender sensitive information (like bank account number, Credit Card info etc. ) by luring you with an unbelievable offer (like you have won 5 crores or 10,000 GBP in a lottery, you never took part in)-- then this is a Phone Scam.

Why Beware! ?

As such phone scams are increasing with each passing day.

An example, of one such Scam Call:

Received a phone call on my Landline phone. Scamsters particularly love land-lines, as most don't have a caller id. The caller introduced himself as Manager LIC (Life Insurance of Corporation), Barakhamba Road, Delhi. He then said, he's calling for some verification drive. Asked me, do I have an LIC Policy. I said yes.
He then asked for policy details. I told him only that much which is found in policy prospectus. He then told me, my LIC branch has not paid me a bonus. A bonus of about Rs.  92,342. 50  I told him, there's no bonus due in my policy. He told me, the bonus is special, which the LIC is distributing to chosen few, after making a big profit by investing in Common Wealth Games.

I again asked -- Why didn't I know anything of this sort?
He answered -- How would You know, as the LIC Branch normally misappropriates such special bonuses?
No. The call was a Scam.
Then the caller asked me -- Do I want to get the amount? If yes, then I would have to deposit Rs 12000 in a bank account (he made me write it).
I asked him, what amount cheque I will get, If I do nothing (like not submitting Rs. 12000). He said in that case, I will get just Rs 8746.34. I said, send the cheque of that amount in my name and address. He disconnected, assuring me he'll call in a while.
He never called again.

Modus Operandi (How they play the Game):

1) Use Reputed names, mainly government, like LIC (They try to take advantage of people's faith in these institutions)

2) Link the marketing pitch with popular words like Common Wealth Games,  Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), Barakhamba Road, etc. The primary aim of using these words is to make the receiver  believe in the story. Common words resonate.

3) If the promise is a Bonus, then make it a non-whole figure like 92,342. 50 Rs. People have faith on non-whole figures.

How To Spot a Scam Message or Call:

1) Unbelievable Offers are always scams (no one gives you 10 crore Rs for nothing).

2) No company gives you a Prize via Phone Call or Message: They may inform you via phone call, but they will back it by written letter. And they don't do it in a secret manner. A company when gives you a prize, advertises the act to the hilt. That's the objective of the prize.

3) No Real company asks for Money: Be it bonus or prize, no company, be it banking, financial or commercial, asks for money in the name of processing fee. that apart, money is never sent solely on phone conversation or message.

4) Banking and Financial Companies are always Extra cautious: If LIC (or any other Insurance Company  public or private) will have to give you bonus; they will not do so via a phone call or message. You will have to take your Cheque from the branch or it'll be straight away posted to your address (once you complete the formalities).Same applies to Banking Institutions.

That apart, Banks and Financial Institutions, do business on principles of Honesty and transparency. They will never embezzle your Money or money die to you (bonus etc.).

What to do:

Simply don't act on these Phone calls or Messages.


The key aim of this article is to inform the Uttarakhand people (and India), how some people are duping unaware citizens via these scams. Kindly Spread this among your family, friends, neighbours; so that no one dupes them (in recent times, many people have lost their hard earned money to these Scammers).

Hope you find the Article informative and useful.


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