Noida woman loses ₹13 lakh in YouTube job scam. Know how to stay vigilant
A woman from Greater Noida lost over ₹13 lakh in a YouTube job scam after being enticed by a WhatsApp offer. The shocking case highlights the need to be vigilant online. Check these tips to stay safe.
A resident of Panchsheel Hynish Society in Greater Noida suffered a financial loss of over ₹13 lakh after falling prey to a WhatsApp scam. The woman, identified as Kartika, received an enticing work-from-home offer through the messaging app. The job involved watching, liking, and subscribing to YouTube videos in exchange for monetary rewards. Intrigued by the apparent simplicity of the task, Kartika engaged with the fraudsters via a Telegram handle, where they promised daily returns ranging from ₹50 to ₹5,000, the Indian Express reports.
A web of deceit: Escalating losses
Initially, the scammers kept their word and credited ₹150 to Kartika's account as a reward for her actions on YouTube. Encouraged by these seemingly legitimate payouts, she continued performing the tasks. The fraudsters then convinced her to invest in a fake Nasdaq website, promising even higher returns. Trusting them, Kartika invested ₹2,000, and to her surprise, they allegedly returned ₹3,150 as a profit on the same day.
As the deception continued, the scammers coerced Kartika into sending large sums of money, including ₹5,000, ₹30,000, and ₹90,000. When she inquired about the lack of returns on her investments, they claimed she had failed a task and introduced new transactions, in which the amounts kept escalating. Fearing that she may lose the money she had already given away, Kartika continued sending more funds with the hope of recovering her initial investments.
To fund these transactions, Kartika and her husband resorted to taking personal loans, thereby accumulating more debts. The scammers demanded further payments, stating that a threshold of ₹15 lakh must be cleared to receive the payment. Despite their growing suspicions, Kartika and her husband continued to comply with the fraudsters' demands.
Once the scammers demanded an additional ₹5,20,000 as a tax payment, they finally realized they had fallen victim to a scam. They then lodged a complaint with the police.
The police have registered a case of cheating and impersonation against the unidentified culprits under Section 66D of the Information Technology (Amendments) Act, 2008. This unfortunate incident underscores the importance of exercising caution when encountering online offers and avoiding falling prey to such scams, which can lead to substantial financial losses.
5 essential tips to safeguard yourself from online scams:
While these 5 tips should form the basic foundation of your attempt to stay safe, what is even more crucial is not to believe what strangers tell you. You must verify any claims by strangers and not give them money for any reason. And remember, if what they are promising is too good to be true, then it probably is and you should not communicate with them. Tales of rich returns are always inflated, if not outrightly false.
Some of the basic precautions you can take
1. Keep your smartphone secure
2. Create a robust password
Create a robust password of 8 characters with upper and lower case letters, special characters, and numbers. Refrain from sharing or writing it down.
3. Beware of suspicious links
Avoid clicking on links from unknown senders to steer clear of phishing scams that aim to steal private login information.
4. Be cautious with social media
Keep social media light-hearted, avoiding sharing sensitive details like usernames and passwords, as cybercriminals can exploit this information.
5. Guard personal information
Refrain from posting personal birthdays or those of family, friends, and colleagues on social media to prevent hackers from accessing sensitive information.