Cyber Crime

CYBER CRIMES: Pune Under Cyber Attack: Task Scams Swindle Residents of Rs 49 Lakh

India Crime News Desk

New Delhi, April 5, 2024

The city of Pune has become a battleground for cybercrime, with a recent wave of task scams leaving a trail of financial devastation. 

Five separate incidents were reported on Wednesday, April 5th, 2024, resulting in a collective loss of a staggering Rs 49 lakh from unsuspecting victims.

False Promises, Real Losses

The modus operandi of these scams revolves around deceptive part-time job offers. 

Fraudsters lure victims with the promise of easy money through seemingly simple tasks like liking videos, writing reviews, or subscribing to channels on platforms like YouTube.

A Case Study in Deception

One particularly distressing case involved a 50-year-old resident. 

This individual, trusting an alias of “Farida Laila Alexander,” was duped into paying a hefty sum of Rs 11.92 lakh for these fabricated tasks.

Beyond the First Victim

Unfortunately, this wasn’t an isolated incident. 

Another victim reported losing a significant amount of Rs 20.07 lakh after being enticed into joining a fraudulent WhatsApp group and participating in its “tasks.”

The scam spanned over three weeks, from March 13th to April 4th.

A Pattern of Exploitation

The remaining cases involved victims in their 20s and 30s, each losing substantial sums (Rs 8.08 lakh and Rs 5.03 lakh respectively) through similar task-based scams disguised as part-time employment opportunities.

Another Victim, Another Loss

Adding to the grim tally, a 29-year-old resident reported a loss of Rs 3.61 lakh, highlighting the widespread nature of this cybercrime wave. 

These incidents serve as a stark reminder of the vulnerabilities individuals face in the digital age.

How to Protect Yourself

Here are some key steps to avoid falling prey to such scams:

Be wary of “easy money” offers: If something seems too good to be true, it probably is. Legitimate job opportunities require effort and don’t involve upfront payments.

Verify information:  Don’t trust anonymous contacts or blindly follow instructions.  Research companies and verify job details before making any financial commitments.

Never share personal information: Legitimate companies won’t request sensitive details like bank account information over social media or text messages.

Report suspicious activity:  If you encounter a potential scam, report it to the authorities immediately.

By following these precautions and staying vigilant, we can combat these online threats and safeguard ourselves from falling victim to cybercrime.


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