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Online loan apps fraud: Chennai, Bengaluru police issue advisory, ask victims to reach out to cybercrime cell

Police said there are around 60 unauthorised online loan apps on Google Play Store, which are not registered or recognised by the Reserve Bank of India as an NBFC (Non-Banking Financial Company).

By: Express Web Desk | Bengaluru, Chennai | Updated: December 25, 2020 8:15:05 am
US agencies hacked, US federal agencies Russia, Russia cyber-attack on US, US FireEye hacked, FireEye cyberfirm hacked, US FireEye hackingThe advisory comes days after a 27-year-old man allegedly died by suicide near Chengalpattu following harassment by people who claimed to be representatives of online money lending applications.

The Greater Chennai Police’s Central Crime Branch (CCB) has issued an advisory urging people not to provide access to loan apps and inform the police if they fall prey to such online frauds.

Police said there are around 60 unauthorised online loan apps on Google Play Store, which are not registered or recognised by the Reserve Bank of India as an NBFC (Non-Banking Financial Company).

“If you or people close to you receive abusive or threatening and harassment calls, prefer a police complaint immediately,” the police said.

The advisory comes days after a 27-year-old man allegedly died by suicide near Chengalpattu following harassment by people who claimed to be representatives of online money lending applications.

The police also warned that such apps have privacy policies that gather data available on a user’s phone, thus violating the user’s privacy and also use it against them. “A user’s phone contacts, photos, camera, locations and phone memory could be compromised by online money lenders. Public should thus be cautious.”

They also informed that the name of the grievance redressal officer along with contact details provided by these apps are fictitious.

Meanwhile, the Central Crime Branch (CCB) of the Bengaluru City Police Wednesday confirmed the presence of illegal app-based instant microloan lending companies operating from Bengaluru as well after similar cases appeared from Hyderabad, Cyberabad, and other cities in the country.

Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Sandeep Patil said three such cases have been registered by the CCB on Wednesday. “CCB has registered three cases against online loan apps which provides loans illegally at exorbitant interest rates.

Anyone who has fallen victim to such fraud should reach out to the cybercrime police station with details.”

A senior CCB officer said that more details of the apps and the cases filed would be publicised only after verifying the same from different sources. “Strict action will be taken against the violators,” he added.

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