A 62-year-old businessman from Bengaluru was rendered bankrupt as fraudsters nearly emptied his account through 5,000 transactions over the last one and a half years. He realised the fraud recently when he was unable to make payment due to low balance. An FIR has been registered at the East CEN police station.
The businessman, who ran a wholesale shop in the city, is now forced to sell his establishment as he has no money to continue the business. Shockingly, he has not shared OTP or any card details over the phone with others, yet lost a huge amount of cash.
The police who are probing the case are now scrambling as there are no clues as to how the money was transacted without the businessman’s knowledge. The police told The Hindu that they are now working on finding clues and have asked the bank in which he is holding the account to send details of locations from where these transactions have happened.
The businessman said that he has a debit card kept at home which he has not used. But the bank statement shows that transactions happened from 2021 to 2023. The transactions were made using card details on phone payment applications, and how fraudsters secured details is not known. “I have not received any OTP or even messages of these transactions,” he said, adding that the bank officials said they have not disabled transaction alerts set for his number.
The bank statements show hundreds of transactions from small to big amounts made for many purchases. The businessman said he had taken a loan from local money lenders to run the business but now he does not have money to repay debt.
A cyber police official who has cracked several cases said either his debit card was subjected to skimming or some known person may have gathered details and used it for transactions. In these kinds of cases, details given by victims plays a major role as calling, OTP sharing or clicking links were not involved, he said.