Thursday, April 16, 2009

Don’t throw your ATM receipt into the bin

News from Assam Tribune:

GUWAHATI, March 31 – Do not throw your ATM receipt into the waste bin after using your card, because that may well land you in serious trouble and you may even become bankrupt without having any clue about it. This is what the sleuths of Special Task Force (STF) of Assam Police have to say after it busted a racket of cyber criminals, who allegedly had siphoned off several lakhs of rupees from the debit card of people via Internet after getting access to such receipts.

Two of the victims of this racket are Satish Sarma, who is an inspector of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) and Srinivas PM, a Guwahati-based schoolteacher.

The STF today arrested Md Manir (26), Md Zamin (24) and Samir Khan (19) from city’s Machkhowa area on charges of hacking the account of one Srinivas PM, from whose SBI account, the trio siphoned off about Rs 69,000 and then used it to buy railway tickets via e-ticketing system of Indian Railways.

Additional SP (STF) Manabendra Deb Rai told this reporter that the gang first collected the receipt from the waste bin of one of the SBI ATM counters and then managed to get access to the four-digit Card Verification Value Code by surfing on the Internet on ‘trial and error basis’ after which the entire money was used to buy as many 22 tickets for various destinations.

“The trio runs a travel agency called SI Travel Agency in Machkhowa and operated from there,” Rai revealed.

Cyber crime expert and Deputy Superintendent of Police (STF) Biraj Das further informed that the trio used different e-mail addresses and user addresses to buy the tickets but “we could zero in on them by locating the Internet Protocol address used for making those transactions over Internet.

“Because of the fact that there was no physical evidence available in the case, we had to smoothly track down the culprits. The culprits used railticketsonline.com to e-transfer the money from the victim’s account,” Das pointed out.

The complaint was initially registered with the Chandmari Police Station, though later it was referred to the STF. The STF has registered case under Sec 66 of the Information Technology Act.

“The trio have confessed to the crime and we would now investigate whether the same group is involved in the case registered under the Bharalumukh Police Station, where a CID inspector has been duped off over Rs 1 lakh,” said Das.

“It is a flourishing racket and we would soon crack down on them,” he added.

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