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Whatsapp frauds increasing in Odisha


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Whatsapp frauds increasing in Odisha

Digital advancement has given fraudsters new ammunition to target the vulnerable. So , it is no surprise  that increasingly scamsters are using fake WhatsApp accounts to pose as top politicians and Government officials to dupe users.

In such an incident, a scamster has allegedly created a fake WhatsApp account in the name of Cuttack district Collector Bhabani Shankar Chayani and sent messages to several users seeking financial help.

The account was created by using the mobile phone number 7696918151.   

The Collector filed a complaint with Cuttack DCP alleging that some miscreants have created the fake WhatsApp account in his name by using his profile photo, which they have downloaded from the internet, and sought money from several people.

The Collector has appealed to people in a tweet not to respond to it. “Someone is communicating from WhatsApp Id with Mob No. 7696918151 portraying himself as Bhabani Shankar Chayani, Collector, Cuttack. This is a Fake Id. Kindly ignore the communication.” Chayani tweeted.

The Cyber Police have registered a case and launched a probe into the incident.

Notably, the Odisha police have arrested three people in the State for their alleged links with cyber criminals who created the fake WhatsApp identity of the Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla.

In 2021, unidentified cybercriminals reportedly hacked the WhatsApp account of the Odisha Computer Application Centre (OCAC) CEO Manoj Kumar Patnaik, who is also the Additional Secretary of the State Electronics And Information Technology (E&IT) Department, and defrauded around Rs 7 lakh from his friends and acquaintances.

As per reports, the miscreants allegedly hacked Pattnaik’s WhatsApp account before sending distress messages to his contacts by impersonating the user.

Following the incident, the E&IT Department had issued an advisory on WhatsApp phishing. Hackers target victims via WhatsApp voice calls or suspicious links on social media, SMS, WhatsApp. By adopting proper precautionary measures, hackers can be kept at bay without uninstalling the App,” the E&IT Department tweeted.

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