Kingfisher scam accused reveals modus operandi
The arrest of one of the accused of booking scam has revealed some bare modus operandi of the gang, reports Debasish Panigrahi.Updated: Jan 25, 2007 23:48 IST
Investigation into the multi-crore ticket booking scam in the Kingfisher Airlines so far has revealed the basic modus operandi of the fraudsters, though many more facets of the scam are yet come to light.
Though the higher ups in the Economic Offences Wing (EOW), which is presently investigating the case, are tight lipped about the investigation, the arrest of one of the accused has revealed some bare modus operandi of the gang.
How did they do it
The foot soldier/s of the racket would collect information about the credit cards from shopping malls, petrol pumps, hotels/restaurants etc. What they need about the card is just the CVV (customer Verification Value) number. The last three digits of the 19 digits imprinted at the back of any credit card (on the white paper strip just below the magnetic tape) are the CVV numbers.
Along with the CVV number, they also collect the credit card number (mostly the 16 digit number embossed on the card). It is suspected that many employees at the shopping mall, petrol pumps, hotels/ restaurants are on the payroll of the racket for providing the vital data on the credit card/s.
Here comes the role of another set of operators. They would befriend (through money of course) travel agency delivery boys and collect information about frequent travellers. The police also suspect the hand of some booking employees of the private airlines as the frequent flyers list is a closely guarded secret for every airlines.
After collecting the information about the frequent flyers, a third set of operators swing into action. They would contact those passengers and offer tickets at a highly discounted price. However, the money has to be paid in cash.
The main brains of the racket enter the scene. Through the available data on credit cards, they would start booking tickets through the on-line booking facility offered by the airlines. The bookings would be done from a cyber café (Galaxy cyber café at Antop Hill in the case of the present Kingfisher airlines ticket scam).
This is done for anonymity. They would then enter the credit card/s number, followed by the CVV numbers, enough to book the ticket/s. After obtaining the confirmation e-mails from the airlines, they would take a print out and wait for the passenger at the airport (or even deliver it at their residences). The payment from the passenger is collected by cash. On the production of the e-ticket (print out of the ticket sent through e-mail), the passengers obtains the boarding pass at the airport
First Published: Jan 25, 2007 23:48 IST