WhatsApp hacker dupes Mumbai doctor of ₹1.50L
A 75-year-old doctor from Mulund is the latest victim of cyber fraudsters that operate through hacking WhatsApp. The fraudsters hacked the WhatsApp of the doctor’s friend in Bahrain and sent him message for urgent financial help due to a medical emergency.
”On July 30 when I was checking patients at a Mulund hospital, I received a missed call on my phone from a friend, also a doctor who lives in Bahrain. When I tried calling back I couldn’t get through his phone number. Later I received WhatsApp message from his number, saying he was stuck in an important meeting and needed his help for a money transaction. He asked me to send ₹1.50 lakh to a person in India on his behalf for a medical emergency. My friend said that once his meeting was over he would send me the money. He also sent me the photo of the Indian patient in the operation theatre,” the complainant doctor stated in the FIR.
The Mulund doctor responded to the message and immediately transferred the amount. Two hours later when he contacted his friend in Bahrain, he found that his friend never sent the WhatsApp messages to him. It turned out that the money was transferred to Meghalaya-based bank accounts and was withdrawn immediately.
Police suspect that the cyber fraud groups that dupe people by WhatsApp hacking method are reactivating again. “Two-three years ago several such cases were reported to police. It seems, now they are back in action. These fraud groups generally target Indians having friends and relatives abroad,” a senior officer said.
The Navghar police registered an FIR on Saturday.
Cyber expert Ritesh Bhatia said a hacker starts WhatsApp on his/her device with the target person’s mobile number and then contacts the person posing as WhatsApp company representative informing the person there is an hacking attempt on his/her WhatsApp account. The hacker further says that in order to secure the account the user needs to share a code with them which has been sent by the server on the user’s number, using which the hacker gains control of the account. Another expert Vicky Shah said, “People must activate two step verification or two-factor authentication on not just on WhatsApp, but on all other social media accounts.”