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Data taken from telecom firm leaks, vehicle portals, not UIDAI: Police

The Crime Branch also arrested two more accused in the case from Pune on Tuesday, taking the total number of arrests in the case to six, including an accused who was arrested from Telangana.

An officer said that they have also identified the 'mastermind' of the racket, the seventh accused in the case who is currently on the run. "Once we arrest the seventh accused, we will get complete clarity on the manner in which the entire operation was carried out," said the officer.So far, those arrested include three persons from Mumbai, two from Pune and one from Telangana.

Days after Mumbai Police’s Crime Branch busted a racket that supplied private data of individuals at a price, officials said the information had not been obtained from UIDAI — which secures Aadhaar card data — but was compiled from three to four different sources.

The Crime Branch also arrested two more accused in the case from Pune on Tuesday, taking the total number of arrests in the case to six, including an accused who was arrested from Telangana.

In the last week of November, the Crime Branch had arrested two brothers, Rahul (28) and Nikhil Eligati (25), who had created the websites — ‘tracenow.co.in’ and ‘www.fonivotech.com’ — which allegedly provided private data of residents of Maharashtra, Gujarat and Delhi.

The data included everything from a person’s Aadhaar card number, address, date of birth and mobile numbers of relatives. This data was sold mainly to loan recovery agents at a monthly subscription cost of Rs 2,000,half-year subscription cost of Rs 12,000 or an annual subscription cost of Rs 24,000. A senior officer said that with six arrests so far, the Crime Branch has found that the accused had complied personal data of individuals from three to four places, including data leaked by telecom companies, vehicle data portals, and a popular Internet company, among others.

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“While initially we were looking into the possibility that the accused may have had access to the UIDAI server, it turns out that this is not the case,” said the officer.

He added, “So far during the probe, we have found that the main purpose of the portal was to provide alternate details of people who took loans from loan recovery agents and had not paid back the amount. Some of them change their numbers and even addresses, which is when numbers of family members and neighbours are used by agents to track them down. Since the amounts involved are huge, they are willing to pay these portals for access to details.”

An officer said that they have also identified the ‘mastermind’ of the racket, the seventh accused in the case who is currently on the run. “Once we arrest the seventh accused, we will get complete clarity on the manner in which the entire operation was carried out,” said the officer.

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So far, those arrested include three persons from Mumbai, two from Pune and one from Telangana.

First published on: 08-12-2022 at 06:15 IST
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