Fake call centre busted in Ggm’s Sector 67; seven suspects held
Police in Gurugram have arrested seven suspects for operating an illegal call centre that was allegedly duping people in the US and Australia out of millions of dollars by pretending to provide technical support. Investigators believe around 25,000 people may have fallen prey to the scam, which involved the sending of fake pop-up error messages warning of malware on victims' computers. The suspects charged between $250 and $300 for their supposed services, which involved access to victims' systems via remote desktop application AnyDesk.
Gurugram: Police on Friday busted an illegal call centre in Sector 67 and arrested seven suspects for allegedly duping people from the United States and Australia under the garb of providing them technical support.
Police recovered seven mobile phones, crypto wallets and six laptops from their possession, said police.
According to investigators, the call centre was duping people of millions of dollars on the pretext of providing remote technical support services. They said at least 25,000 users, based in the US, Australia and a few other English-speaking countries, are suspected to have been targeted.
Police conducted a raid at the call centre that lasted for several hours and arrested the suspects. It was operating for the last eight months, police added.
According to investigators, they received a tip-off about the illegal call centre that was operating from an apartment in Sector 67.
Varun Dahiya, assistant commissioner of police (crime), said during interrogation, the call centre employees said they were working as per the directions of two individuals who were not present at the call centre. “The employees were paid ₹35,000 per month along with other incentives,” he said.
The suspects were identified as Mohammad Zafar Iqbal (38), Noor Hussain (28), Sumit (32), Abhishek Mishra (30), Sheikh Ibrahim (28), Abhishek Gupta (35), and Mohammad Adil (32).
ACP Dahiya said the suspects revealed that they had taken up the apartment on rent for the last one month and used to send toll-free numbers through e-mails to nearly 5,000 foreign nationals. “When the customers used to call the toll-free numbers, the suspects used to get access to their systems through the remote desktop application AnyDesk and charge them,” he said. Police said the suspects used to charge the victims $250-300.
Vipin Ahlawat, assistant commissioner of police (cyber) said, “The suspects made Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) calls and duped people into paying for technical support services. We seized seven laptops and have initiated a probe,” he said.
ACP Ahlawat said their modus operandi was to send emails to potential victims with fake pop-up error messages, stating that a malware had infected their computer systems and if not rectified immediately, their personal and financial data would be compromised.
Police said the suspects were unable to furnish documents required for running the call centre, such as licence from the department of telecommunications, company registration, source of customers and mode of payments.
A case was registered against the suspects under Section 420 (cheating) and120B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) along with sections of the Information Technology (IT) Act at the Cyber Crime police station, police added.