E-Challan Scam: Understanding latest e-challan scam and ways to safeguard yourself
PTC Web Desk: Government officials and law enforcement agencies are issuing cautionary alerts to the public regarding an e-challan scam that specifically targets vehicle owners through SMS messages designed to closely mimic legitimate traffic challan notifications.
The E-Challan Scam: How It Unfolds
Operating with calculated precision, the e-challan scam begins with the scammers sending a text message to your mobile device. These messages are meticulously crafted to closely resemble authentic e-challan alerts, thus triggering a sense of familiarity. Embedded within these messages is a payment link that, at first glance, appears innocuous. However, the real danger emerges upon clicking this link. The consequence is a breach of your phone's security, granting hackers unauthorized access to your sensitive credit or debit card information. In this swift maneuver, the perpetrators manage to defraud you before you even realize it, leaving you a victim of their deceptive tactics.
फर्जी ई-चालान घोटाले के झाँसे में न आएँ!''????????????
आपकी सुरक्षा आपकी जिम्मेदारी ????#TrafficFines #FakeEChallan #India #staysafeonline #cybersecurity #g20india #g20org #g20summit #besafe #staysafe #ssoindia #meity #mygovindia #NeerajChopra pic.twitter.com/qKts1bAbtS — Information Security Awareness (ISEA) by MeitY (@InfoSecAwa) August 28, 2023
Need To Remain Alert
Acknowledging that scammers have adeptly mimicked official formats, it becomes crucial to remain cautious. Diligently examine the provided payment link to spot potential traps. Genuine e-challan payment links adhere to the format https://echallan.parivahan.gov.in/. The scammers, however, deploy links closely resembling the legitimate version, such as https://echallan.parivahan.in/. The disparity might easily go unnoticed at first glance, emphasising the importance of a discerning eye.
Additional Indicators of The Scam
Exercising patience is paramount when it comes to responding to such messages. Law enforcement professionals specialising in cybercrime advise vehicle owners to meticulously review these messages before venturing onto any embedded links. A hallmark of genuine notifications is the inclusion of specific vehicle details, including engine and chassis numbers. These pertinent specifics are glaringly absent in the fraudulent SMSes perpetrated by scammers. Moreover, it's prudent to validate the authenticity of fines on the official government website rather than hastily complying with dubious demands. Notably, legitimate e-challan alerts are never issued from cellphone numbers, offering an additional red flag to potential targets.
Steps to Take If You Fall Victim to Scam
In the unfortunate event that you fall victim to this scam, swift action is imperative. Notify the appropriate authorities without delay. Dialing 1930 - the National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal - can trigger a timely response. Simultaneously, lodging a complaint at www.cybercrime.gov.in can help halt the transaction and safeguard your hard-earned funds. Additionally, contact your financial institution promptly to apprise them of the situation and mitigate potential damage. Concluding this process, approach the nearest police station to officially record your complaint, setting in motion the pursuit of justice.
- With inputs from agencies