UPI frauds – With the growing amount of online transactions in India, avoiding online payment fraud when utilising UPI applications or e-wallets is getting increasingly challenging. According to data broadcasted by the National Payments Corporation of India, the absolute number of transactions made over the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) in February 2022 was INR 2.29 billion (NPCI). As more individuals in the country use UPI applications and e-wallets to conduct payments, the risk of online fraud is increasing.
Scammers are constantly finding innovative ways to take people’s hard-earned money. Many of these victims have taken to social media to share their stories. Fraudsters are becoming more and more inventive by the day. UPI is a convenient way to move money between bank accounts but also be used to defraud you.
Here are 5 steps you should take to protect yourself from such fraud:
Don’t interact with scammers
Please don’t interact if you don’t recognise a phone number or are unsure of the caller’s identity or the source of information conveyed. Phone numbers provided on open online sources, particularly those for food or beverage establishments, should be avoided since they may not be genuine. Always double-check that the individual is who they claim to be. Keep in mind that your bank will never ask you for personal information over the phone or a text message.
Always recall the golden rule of accepting money
There is no requirement to enter a PIN while receiving money. Fraudsters are abusing the request money’ option on payment applications. They’ll pretend to be interested in buying something you’ve posted for sale on the internet. Remember that you will never be asked for a PIN if money has to be debited to your bank account.
Be aware of payment requests and SPAM warnings
The UPI app will most likely display a spam alert if you get a request from an unrecognised account. Make sure you choose the right choice, such as ‘Pay’ or ‘Decline.’ If you suspect fraud, deny the request. Don’t let the ‘Pay’ option fool you into believing you’ll get money. Money is sent to the fraudster’s account once you type in the UPI PIN.
Be careful of cloned applications
Many harmful apps act as legitimate apps to deceive you. The software will be easy to download and resemble the actual bank app. If you install the bogus app by accident, it will provide criminals access to your secret information, authorising them to steal money from your account. Look out for fake applications that have been identified as fraud apps for obtaining personal data from clients under the guise of delivering a valuable financial service.
Always do safe practices
To keep your account safe, follow some fundamental Dos and Don’ts.
- Never tell your PIN to anyone.
- Maintain your anti-virus and biometric recognition software.
- Never open unsolicited emails or links.
- Maintain contact with your bank and keep your information up to date.
- Do not utilise unsecured WiFi connections; instead, use secure WiFi networks you trust.
- Keep track of your monetary actions and bank account statements, and keep a check on your account for any unusual activity.
- If you notice anything unknown or suspicious, contact your bank right away or go to the cybercrime department of police.
- Keep changing your UPI pin time to time.
- Set a transactional limit in your account.