392 mobile handsets to be blocked over KYC scams linked to electricity bills: DoT | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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392 mobile handsets to be blocked over KYC scams linked to electricity bills: DoT

Jun 18, 2024 09:24 AM IST

An analysis revealed that 392 handsets linked to 31,740 mobile numbers were involved in such fraudulent activities

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) on Monday ordered all telecom service providers to block 392 handsets (using IMEI numbers) from accessing telecom services, and re-verification of 31,740 mobile connections linked to these handsets following complaints of electricity bills-linked KYC scams made on its Chakshu portal.

Representational image. (Shutterstock)
Representational image. (Shutterstock)

Chakshu is a module on the DoT’s ‘Sanchar Saathi’ portal that was launched in March to allow users to report suspected fraud communications received over calls, SMSs or WhatsApp.

In this case, fraudsters would send SMS and WhatsApp messages, falsely instructing victims to update their KYC details to continue their electricity connections. At times, fraudsters would send malicious APK (Android application packages) files, which are fake app links, via WhatsApp, allowing them to manipulate and take control of the victims’ devices. Multiple such messages were reported on Chakshu, the DoT said in a statement.

An initial analysis identified five suspected numbers. “The portal’s AI-driven analysis revealed that 392 handsets linked to 31,740 mobile numbers were involved in such fraudulent activities,” the statement said.

In case the re-verification fails, the reported mobile numbers will be immediately disconnected, and the associated handsets will also be blocked.

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