Andhra Pradesh: Kadapa police bust Aadhaar Enabled Payment System scam, two held

The accused, who have registered themselves as e-governance and banking service providers in Uttar Pradesh, allegedly withdrew money by cloning fingerprints of people, say police; they were named in 128 FIRs and 308 National Cybercrime Reporting Portal petitions registered in Telangana, Andhra Pradesh Uttarakhand, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, Gujarat and Haryana

Published - February 10, 2023 09:45 pm IST - KADAPA

Superintendent of Police K.K.N. Anburajan presenting the accused before the media in Kadapa on Friday.

Superintendent of Police K.K.N. Anburajan presenting the accused before the media in Kadapa on Friday. | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

The cybercrime wing of the Kadapa police has busted a major racket involving a group who allegedly cloned fingerprints and withdrew money through Aadhaar Enabled Payment System (AEPS) from various bank accounts.

The accused, identified as Vikas (27), hailing from Gorakhpur, and Akshay Yadav (34) hailing from of Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh, were arrested from their home State based on the clues provided by the kingpin of the racket, Sheshnath Viswakarma, who was recently nabbed by the Kadapa Police.

The accused had allegedly collected the Aadhaar details of more than 22,000 persons by illegal means, along with the fingerprints of 1 lakh people in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. “The gang allegedly scanned the data and enhanced the quality by reportedly using Photoshop software. They cloned fingerprints on butter paper by using a polymer sheet and heating it at a certain temperature with a chemical,” Superintendent of Police K.K.N. Anburajan said, while producing the accused before the media here on February 10 (Friday).

The issue came to light when a victim S. Rajasekhar Reddy hailing from Chinnachowk in Kadapa lodged a complaint recently, stating that ₹89,550 had been withdrawn from his bank account without his knowledge. He told the police that neither had he divulged any OTP nor received any phishing calls.

Investigation revealed that the gang had learnt hacking and cloning techniques to make the clones of fingerprints. They bought the equipment required for making cloned fingerprints from online shopping websites and procured biometric machine, rubber thump impression printer, polymer liquid, temperature modulator and other chemicals. “The accused had registered themselves as Customer Service Points (CSP) for e-governance and banking services in Uttar Pradesh,” the police said.

The accused were named in 128 FIRs and 308 petitions in National Cybercrime Reporting Portal (NCRP), including 117 in Telangana, two in Uttarakhand, three each in Jharkhand and Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, Gujarat and Haryana.

“We have zeroed in on three accounts in HDFC Bank so far and found financial transactions done through the gang to cheat 440 people across the country,” Mr. Anburajan said.

The SP lauded the cyber team comprising Additional Superintendent (Administration) Tushar Dudi, Deputy Superintendent (Faction zone) G. Chenchu Babu, Inspectors Sriram Srinivas (Chinnachowk) and Sridhar Naidu (Cybercrime).

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