Missed Call Fraud: What Is SIM Swap And How Can You Lose Lakhs In Seconds

Last Updated: December 20, 2022, 20:22 IST

Mobile phone can be the ideal weapon for attackers

If you think that accessing your bank account needs an OTP for verification then SIM Swap will definitely leave you worried.

You must have read the news recently, where a man based in Delhi received a missed call on his phone multiple times, and even a blank call with no one speaking at the other end. And the next thing he realises is that a massive Rs 50 lakh was withdrawn from his bank account.

People usually say that SIM-based authentication requires the person to approve via a one-time password (OTP) which they receive on their mobile number. But in this case, the missed call was enough to get the job done.

The reason for this fraud is being suspected as a SIM swap by the police, which is made possible by accessing the personal details of the victim and coercing them to share confidential details and use them for mischievous purposes.

So what exactly is SIM Swap fraud, how can one use this technique to steal money from your account and how does one prevent such actions? Here are all the details about this new form of fraud.

The New-Age Mobile Fraud?

The modus operandi of the SIM Swap fraud is not very different from regular attacks, just that it feels more sophisticated and takes advantage of people being careless about their approach on the internet. The SIM swap process allows the fraudster to gain access to your phone number. Now, how do they do that?

Firstly, they will send phishing emails to your email ID which has been picked up from various platforms. They also use fraudulent calls to get all the personal details about the supposed victim.

Once they have all the required details, they reach out to the telecom operator asking them to issue a duplicate SIM citing reasons such as losing their phone or the old SIM getting damaged. If the details submitted to the telco are accurate, chances are the fraudster will be able to get a SIM card activated on your number, in this case, the victim of this fraud.

Now, if the duplicate SIM is active, you will notice the original SIM on the number stops working as the telco blocks them at its end. With phones becoming a powerful tool to access various accounts these days, the attacker can then retrieve your bank account number, get an OTP to the linked mobile number and able to withdraw money without causing any suspicion.

How To Prevent SIM Swap-Like Incidents?

General tips to prevent any kind of cyber or mobile fraud mention user awareness and know-how of these attacks that can be used to dupe them at any instance.

– Avoid opening emails from unknown senders, and always check for the email ID details before downloading any attachments or clicking on any link.

– Never share your account details, email IDs or password with unknown callers who might call themselves the bank of telecom operator executives. Neither banks nor operators will ever ask for these details.

– If you suspect any transaction or phone call that might carry a threat, alert the authorities or the telecom operator of such activity on your number.

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