After RBL, police suspect data of SBI and Axis is at risk

By Abhinay Deshpande

It was not just the confidence of RBL Bank customers that certainly took a hit following the breach of the ‘classified’ data of credit cardholders, but the data of State Bank of India and Axis Bank is also at risk.

Sources in the Cyberabad police commissionerate have confirmed that certain groups of cyber fraudsters operating their country-wide network from the national capital, were constantly updated with the ‘fresh’ credit cardholders data by their ‘partners’ in the banks.

“We are getting bank fraud cases from the customers of SBI and Axis Bank also. It is yet to be verified whether the data has been leaked or not. There might be data loss or it could be some social engineering fraud,” crime police said.

After Cyberabad police unearthed Delhi-based fake call centres and arrested 16 persons from Delhi and Ujjain, it had exposed the flaws in customer data security and also in the issuing of SIM cards by the network providers without any proper verification. The gang was involved in nearly 35 cases in Cyberabad, and 166 cases across the country.

Police said that the fraudsters had updated data of the thousands of customers who received new credit cards and it was a bank’s insider who is the architect of this whole fraud.

The investigators are racking their brains to know how exactly and from where the data leak had taken place in the banking company and how did the mobile service provider company issued over 1,000 SIM cards without any verification by accepting forged Aadhaar cards and PAN cards.

Meanwhile, police are still clueless about the insider (bank employees) who constantly went on leaking the updated data of their credit cardholders to the arrested kingpins of the frauds, Deepak Chaudhary and his associate Vishal Kumar alias Vishal Chouhan, both residents of Uttam Nagar, New Delhi. Deepak had previous experience with the banking sector and had a well-oiled network within the bank to get his things done.

Police teams are also on the job to arrest Deepak’s two sisters and three more women from Delhi who were part of the fraud.

“As of now, we could not track him/them. The bank is also helping us with leads to know from where the database was leaked. Even they are worried as their customer information got leaked,” Cyberabad’s Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crimes) Rohini Priyadarshini told The Hindu.

When asked how the SIM cards were issued on forged/fake identification cards, Ms. Priyadarshini said “like earlier days, there is no robust verification mechanism right now, which is resulting in such several cyber frauds.”

She said that the verification process should happen at the highest level where it can be fixed, but not at the vendors end.

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