Beware of fake e-challan scam! Click and you will lose control of your bank account
- If you get a text message from the Traffic Police, exercise all caution as it may well be a fake e-challan sent by cybercriminals to steal money.
A new online scam alert has been sounded by authorities after it was discovered that cybercriminals were utilising fake Traffic Police invoices to dupe people of their money. The fake e-challan scam alert was sent out by the Information Security Awareness (ISEA) by MeitY. In an easy-to-understand graphic that was posted on X (formerly Twitter), authorities sent a new scam alert for everyone saying, "Beware!! If you receive a link for traffic challan, don't click these links."
It added, "Don't Fall for the Fake E-Challan Scam! Your Safety is Your Responsibility."
The post on X also warned about the consequences of clicking on these fake links. It explained, "As clicking on these links for payment, fraudsters can hack your account"
Helpfully, ISEA also showcased an example of this e-challan message that read, "Your challan No. is 348915784195032 for PB08DJ8182 having total challan amount as Rs. 500. For online payment of challan visit: https:// echallanparivahan.in/ you can also contact RTO office for disposal of challan. Regards, RTO."
This was in fact the fake link where those unaware of fraud could have their bank accounts hacked!
The genuine link too was provided and this was: https://echallan.parivahan.gov.in/.
If you do receive such scam messages, do remember to take utmost care and verify the link that you are clicking on. All it takes is a simple Google Search and all the details are revealed if you do it properly.
DCP HQ and Cyber Crime Officer Hemendra Kumar Meena told the Times of India about the scam and warned the public at large about these fake e-challan links being spread online.
How the scam works
To the public, these links are being sent through text messages and they appear to be genuinely provided by the Traffic Police. However, the truth is far from that as the link will take the user to a fake e-challan website. The user will then be asked to insert their banking details on these links to make the payment. Those who do, will have compromised their bank accounts.
How to stay safe
The 2 things that people must look out for is the presence of "gov.in" in the URL indicating it is a government website as well as the presence of important vehicle details like engine and chassis numbers too.