Instant loan on apps used as bait to extort money
The next time you are lured by mobile apps offering loans in a jiffy without paperwork – Beware, you could not only get yourself into trouble, but also involve your friends and loved ones in a web of threats, abuse, blackmail and extortion. The Mira Bhayandar-Vasai Virar (MBVV) police cyber cell unit has arrested two people, including a woman, for their alleged role in electronic financial fraud tactics through such apps.
The action followed in response to a complaint by a 26-year-old woman who came across the money lending facility and availed instant loans amounting to Rs. 2.4 lakhs in small values by downloading such apps. Despite repaying the loans with interest, she began receiving abusive phone calls from debt collectors demanding more money, trapping her in a cycle of debt.
“To denigrate the image of the borrower and extract more money, the scammers even called their friends and relatives. Contact data is accessible when the potential borrower downloads the apps and grants permissions. said a police officer while adding a note of caution to avoid downloading dubious apps or clicking on suspicious/unsolicited links.
The money trail and a detailed investigation by Cyber Cell to determine the origin of the company behind these apps led to the arrest of two people, including a 50-year-old woman from Thane, for their involvement presumed. A case under the relevant sections of the IPC and the Information Technology Act has been filed against the two people who were taken into custody.
The MBVV police have received complaints from traumatized victims who are similarly abused. Most of these apps that offer instant loans operate without registration or recognition by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) as a Non-Banking Financial Company (NBFC). Kashimira police are investigating the case again.
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Posted: Thursday March 10th 2022, 8:37 PM IST