Mumbai: Criminals flipped letters in mail ID to trick businessman

  • Vijay Kumar Yadav, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Feb 06, 2015 22:20 IST

A simple cyber trick could have cost south Mumbai businessman Niraj Angara. The criminals changed the placement of letters to trick Angara into believing the mail was sent by the Chinese firm he deals with.

“The email ID of the firm Angara deals with is ‘’. The fraudsters sent Angara a mail from the ID ‘’. They flipped a single letter in the email ID, but retained the mail’s content and design,” an officer said. As the change was so minor, Angara was easily tricked.

In his complaint, Angara told the DB Marg police he uses his personal ID for business work and that his transactions were done from a savings account in a nationalised bank.

The mail sent by the criminals said the firm’s bank account had changed and that Angara should make the payment to a new account. The crime came to light only after the firm told Angara they received no payments.

Angara registered a case under section 420 of the Indian Penal Code and sections 66 A (sending offensive messages through communication serviceand 66 C (identity theft) of the IT Act.

“An initial probe showed the fake account was generated in Nigeria. But before the fraudster could withdraw the money, the account was frozen,” said inspector Sardar Patil of the DB Marg police station. Patil said the BKC cyber police station is providing them with technical assistance.

You’ve got wrong mail: Fake email IDs have been used in the past to dupe people
* January 2014
Criminals hacked into the Hotmail account of IPS officer TS Bhal, accessed his contacts and created a similar mail ID to send mails to his contacts. The mail said Bhal was in America on a secret mission and had lost his bags, money, valuables and passport. The crime came to light after one of Bhal’s friends deposited Rs2.6 lakh in the account and called him up. The payment to the account was stalled and five people, including a Nigerian national, were arrested

* January 2015
Dr Vandana Lulla, director of Podar International School, registered an FIR with the Santacruz police about someone hacking into her account and sending emails to her friends, relatives and parents, asking for money be transferred to a private bank account. Cyber Crime Investigation Cell officials have arrested six people. The probe showed the accused had 15 bank accounts in private banks that they used to extort money.

Stay safe
* While sending details through email, check if the right address has been entered
* If you get a business-related email asking you to send money to another bank account, call your contact and confirm
* Do not reply to unauthorised or suspicious emails that offer prizes or lotteries. Replying to such mails could compromise your information
* Never click on unknown links, as some of these are encrypted with bugs or viruses that could transfer all of your data to fraudsters.

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