A nation-wide fraud involving fake Income Tax Department websites, fraudulent emails and phising websites cheating tax-payers by promising IT refunds has been detected by the Cyberabad’s Cyber Crimes Cell.
Using proxy servers, the culprits are sending emails that appear to have been sent from Income Tax Department, but were actually online traps to dupe unsuspecting victims.
The Cyber Crimes Cell discovered this fraud after a woman employee who had recently filed her IT returns lodged a complaint. In her complaint, she stated that she had received an email purported to have been sent from IT Department with email I’d firstname.lastname@example.org informing that she was eligible for a tax refund of Rs 27,900. ‘
‘The email directed her to click on a web link provided in the email to file a request to have the total sum transferred into her bank account. There were instructions to ensure that all details are entered correctly to avoid delay in the remittance of benefits. At the end of the email it was mentioned ‘Regards, Income tax department, Ministry of Finance, Govt. of India.’
Thinking that the email was genuine, she entered her bank account number and also the ATM pin which was asked for in the email. After some time to her surprise she received SMS alert on her cell phone that an amount of Rs 45,880 was deducted from her account. The entire amount in her account was withdrawn.
Then she realised that, she was duped by the phishing site,” an official said. She lodged a complaint and the Cyber Crime Police registered a case for cheating in the name of Income Tax Department. ‘
“We are getting similar complaints from the victims. It appears that the culprits are using a proxy server and sending the mails as if the mail is sent from Income Tax Department and duping the victims” an official said. During the investigation, when cops approached IT Department, they said that Income Tax Dpartment never sends such emails . “They said that it is a phishing email and requested that if anyone receives such email, they should first contact the PRO of the nearest Income Tax Department office,” the official said.
Meanwhile, Cyberabad Cyber Cell is trying to track culprits involved in this online fraud.