Hyderabad cops warn of fake trading apps, urge public to stay vigilant

Unfortunately, many professionals such as chartered accountants and advocates have become victims of these scams

Hyderabad: There has been a notable surge in cybercrimes associated with counterfeit stock market trading apps and deceptive trading advisories, resulting in significant financial losses, Hyderabad police said, warning people against falling prey to such scams.

The strategy employed by fraudsters involves reaching out to potential targets through various social media platforms such as Telegram, Whatsapp, Instagram, and Facebook, where they advertise free stock market tips and advice. To gain the trust of their targets, they showcase fake screenshots of profits purportedly earned by other clients.

Initially, the fraudsters transfer money to the target’s bank account, then persuade them to join premium/VIP groups promising more profitable stock market tips. Victims unknowingly fall prey to this scheme. While fake profits are displayed on the website dashboard, the victims can’t withdraw the amount.

MS Education Academy

Fraudsters then demand additional money for account unblocking, citing various taxes and penalties. Unfortunately, many professionals such as chartered accountants and advocates have become victims of these scams.

For instance, an advocate invested a substantial sum of Rs 85 lakhs in a fraudulent trading website after seeing an ad on Facebook and suffered significant losses. Similarly, an IT employee lost Rs. 55 lakhs after being added to a Whatsapp group by fraudsters.

Another victim, a trained Chartered Accountant, was lured into investing Rs. 91 lakhs in a fake trading website.

Warning the people against such frauds, Joint Commissioner of Police, Crimes and SIT, A V Ranganath, listed precautionary measures, including trading only through SEBI-registered applications, avoiding transferring money to individual bank accounts, verifying the authenticity of apps from Google Playstore or official websites, refraining from sharing Demat account credentials with strangers, and being skeptical of dubious conversations in unknown groups before investing money.

Back to top button