Cyber Crime On The Rise- Staying Safe In A Cashless Environment

credit card phishing
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Rising cases of Cyber Crime has left Pune’s citizens with many questions. While the government has been consistent about the need to go cashless. there are several pitfalls in doing, say experts and citizens alike. 

As per recent statistics provided by the state government, in 2017 4,035 cases of cyber crimes were registered under the IT Act, against 2,380 cases that were registered in 2016.

Pune365 spoke to cyber experts, bankers and citizens on staying safe in a cashless environment.

Adv. Rajas Pingle, A Pune based Cyber Law & Cyber Security Expert who spoke to us shared that cyber crime involves criminal activity such as Phishing among other methods.

Phishing is the criminally fraudulent process of attempting to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details by deceptive means in an electronic communication.

It can also be termed as the oldest trick in the books of cybercriminals. Over a period of time, I have realised that being educated has less to do with avoiding or identifying these perpetrators from scamming you, but has more to do with how vigilant and greedy you are.

  • Common Scams:
    Lottery Scam (Nigerian Scams 419)Foreign/Domestic Job offer Scam, Smishing, Vishing, Fake website, Change in Banking details fraud,
    Crypto Currency Phishing

Nowadays everyone uses WIFI network at their Homes.Following are some easy tips to keep your network protected:

Make sure you set a strong and unique password to secure your wireless network
Increase your Wi-Fi security by activating network encryption.
Wireless networks come with multiple encryption languages, such as WEP, WPA or WPA2. Good news is that WPA3 is already here to replace WPA2
Turn off the wireless home network when you’re not at home
Use a strong network administrator password to increase Wi-Fi security
Change the name of your default home network

A ‘man in the middle’ attack happens when malicious hackers put themselves into a conversation between two people and intercept the data that is being relayed.

The system is trusted, but it has been compromised without either party knowing.

Be careful what you’re connecting to
Look for a lock in your address barMost internet browsers will show a lock symbol in the toolbar next to the URL when the site is secure, but in the event, it’s missing, make sure the website address is preceded by HTTPS. That ‘S’ is all important as it stands for ‘secure’. A simple HTTP address will mean that your traffic is in plain text – and therefore not encrypted.
Use a good firewall
Use a good VPN serviceIf you use public WIFI often then it would be a good idea to get yourself a VPN service.
Use common sense. This is the most important factor in avoiding being a victim of any cybercrime.

He further added that “If you’re performing online transaction, make sure you visit only reputed websites, Look for a lock in your address bar.

Cyber Crime awareness is essential. Cyber-crime and privacy breach in India have been growing exponentially every day.

In this scenario, it is important for every user to understand the risks associated with the cyberspace.

This year one of our (Netlawgic Legal) initiatives is to launch a new website www.cybercrimeawareness.org as the diverse threats we face are increasingly cyber-based. This is for making society aware of the new cyber crimes and safety measures.

Rohit Parihar, a banker says, “ Technological advancements have certainly reached the next level, thanks to the Smartphones and the internet and yet has given way to cyber crime also.

Cyber crimes, debit-credit card frauds are rising not only in India, but all over the world. According to data released recently, India ranks 3rd in the past last five years for card fraud.”

Card Fraud incidents are very common and people become easy prey to this. Majority of these cases involve Card Cloning where the caller says that bank needs the card details and urges the customer to share their card details and Pin over the phone. 

Another method used is where the ATM machines have a device installed which registers the card details and pin, following which the money is withdrawn or transferred.

Parihar further adds, To avoid falling prey, one should not share their ATM pins- No banker asks you for ATM pin and card details.

Options like Cash on delivery is the best to prevent an issue, though still people opt for internet payment in return for some cash back. It is advisable to use a card only when options of COD is not available. And most importantly, whatever the e-commerce site suggests, never save your card details on their site. 

“Report immediately If the card is lost, or some fraudulent transactions are noticed from your account.

Banks nowadays have the facility of 24*7 helplines to register your complaints. And once the case is registered, as per law you’re no longer held responsible for any transactions carried out from your card or bank account.”

It is important to ensure that the website URL has https and the lock sign- a simple way to check if the site is secure, says Siddharth Gadge, techie.

Everybody knows that cybercrime is on rise but people are addicted to online shopping so much, that we often ignore safety while transacting.

As far as the payment is concerned, it is best to avoid online payments and if you’re paying online, choose trusted services like Paytm, Amazon, Phone pe.

Avoid paying from electronic bank transfers as the bank is not responsible for the money once it has left the bank. Gadge adds.

From shopping online to availing services online, transactions have been increasingly popular as it is very convenient and time-saving, says Kiara Shetty, Freelancer.

People in the city are still not aware and often underestimate increasing cyber crime. With the rising use of smartphones, it has become easy for people to access the internet to carry out activities like net banking and online shopping which is why it is extremely important for people to know about the online fraudsters and Phishing scams.

To save yourself from getting involved in scams and frauds, stick to sensible rules before you carry out any transactions, Install paid antivirus, keep them updated, Look for warnings before you proceed, never save your passwords for any site, use trusted websites, keep your details private and trust your instinct if you find anything fishy, Shetty adds.

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Ankita Malekar

Ankita Malekar

A talkative tiny speck in the world of Media, with an itch for travel and paws.
Ankita Malekar

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