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Showing posts with label QR code. Show all posts

E-Sim Fraud and Prevention


Some mobile service providers have eSIM-enabled cell phones which don't need an actual SIM card. They have a little chip inside the phone and the data on this eSIM is rewritable so the client can change the operator without any problem. The victim normally gets a message cautioning that his/her SIM card will be blocked, which says: “Dear customer, your SIM card will be blocked in 24 hours.” Or “Please update your eKYC verification.” These criminals call the network clients in the name of customer care executives and ask them to request e-SIM activation.

After the message, fraudsters call their victim claiming to be telecom organization's customer care executive; say from Airtel, Reliance Jio, or Vodafone-Idea. The message, which looks like from the customer care cell of a mobile service provider, requests that clients click on a link and fill a form. This form can ask for multiple types of data like Bank Details, PII, and so on. Clients are then approached to forward an email ID, sent by the fraudsters, to the customer care of that specific telecom operator. The email ID belongs to the scamsters so that they can register their mail IDs.

In the wake of getting their own email ID enrolled with the victim’s mobile number, the caller at that point requests the victim to forward an eSIM request to the service provider with an enlisted email ID. They deceive the client into sending an email sent by the service provider on their enlisted email addresses.

When the eSIM service gets activated, the activation QR code for eSIM goes to the email ID given by the fraudster. After eSIM activation, the actual SIM that is running in the victims' phone consequently gets blocked. The fraudster registers the eSIM with digital wallets and links it to the victim's bank accounts to steal money. Following this, the casualties are made to fill in their details, including bank details, in a google form. That is the way cybercriminals gain admittance to the bank accounts of these users. 

 A few safety measures to prevent e-SIM frauds: 

1. Go to the SIM provider directly to get your e-SIM. 

2. Your SIM is never blocked in the wake of upgrading from physical sim to e-SIM. Never believe scammers threatening that your SIM will be hindered unless you upgrade. 

3. Never give your details for SIM up-gradation or share any OTP/click on given un-verified links.

Reference: Rahul Tyagi, Co-founder, SAFE Security. 

Scammers are Tricking Consumers via QR Code Phishing Campaign


QR codes - the little Digi squares, an effective tool for contactless transactional activities especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. Quick Response (QR) codes were originally developed back in the mid-nineties for utilization in the Japanese auto-making industry as a swift, machine-readable technique to reserve information regarding a specific item, whether for production, inventory, or eventual scale. 

QR code is the most convenient method to pay or receive money and this tool has seemed to grow exponentially in the last 5 years, mainly due to the explosion in the popularity of smartphones over the past decade. Most of the modern-day Android and iOS camera apps read the codes naturally unlike the previous years where the users have to download a particular QR code-scanning apps to access the information programmed into the tiny squares.

The biggest concern begins when fraudsters start to use QR codes as a doorway to secure consumers' private information regarding bank details, private messages, etc. So how to identify what’s hidden in the QR codes and gain the necessary knowledge to identify a fraudulent one?

The popular method used by the fraudsters is to send texts to the consumers like – ‘Congratulations! You have won 2000 Rs.’ along with the picture of the QR code. This text will prompt the consumers to scan the QR code, enter the amount which will redirect the consumers to the UPI PIN page to receive the money in their account. Most of the consumers with less awareness are trapped in the net laid by the scammers and end up paying the scammer the amount.

The next popular method used by scammers to trick the consumers is to embed a fake QR code into a phishing email, text, or via social media platform. If the consumer scans the fake code which will redirect the consumer to the website with realistic-looking landing pages and the consumer will prompt the consumer to login via PII (personally identifiable information). A fabricated QR code has the ability to take the consumer to the websites where malware can be automatically installed and used to steal critical information from the consumers’ device or even share spyware or viruses.

Three methods to prevent yourself from QR code scam 

1.) Read the message carefully and pay attention to the small details while making transactions via QR code. 

2.) The device used for making payments should be updated frequently and install security software. If any suspicion arises immediately get in touch with your bank and request them to alter your login credentials.

 3.) If the problem is severe you can contact the police and register a formal complaint with the cyber cell, the consumer can also register an online complaint on the National Cybercrime Reporting Portal –