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Avoid UPI Frauds

Avoid UPI Frauds – Do not fall prey

UPI (Unified Payments Interface) is an instant real-time payment system developed by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) facilitating inter-bank peer-to-peer and person-to-merchant transactions.

While the number of transactions on the UPI platform has increased significantly, so have the number of fraudulent transactions using UPI services.

It is therefore prudent to understand how UPI frauds take place and how you can avoid falling prey to such scams.

Fraudsters pretend to be buyers on an online sales platforms and show their interest in the seller/customer’s product/s.

Instead of paying money to the seller/customer, they use the “request money” option of Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and mislead the seller/customer to approve the request by entering their UPI PIN. Once the seller enters their PIN, the money is transferred to the fraudster’s account.

  • On a busy workday, Mr. Sharma received a call from a random number. The caller introduced himself as a customer care representative from PhonePe. He informed Mr. Sharma that due to his high usage of PhonePe in the last month, he has been rewarded with a Cashback of INR 9999.
    To claim the Cashback reward, the caller sends Mr. Sharma a Collect Request of INR 9999 and forces him to open the request on the PhonePe app and enter their UPI PIN.
    In an instant and without much thought, Mr. Sharma enters his UPI PIN and approves the collect request. The amount of INR 9999 immediately gets debited from his account.
  • As she was moving to a new city, Sneha put up an advertisement on OLX to sell her furniture. Within a few hours of putting up the advertisement, she received a call from a random number, stating that they were interested in buying all her furniture. The caller did not bargain and accepted the first price quoted by Sneha. The caller then shares his Aadhaar, PAN Card Copy and an ID card of paramilitary force, citing that he is a paramilitary personnel (fraudsters pretend to be defense personnel posted in remote locations, to gain their victims’ confidence).
    The caller then sends a QR Code to Sneha via WhatsApp to receive the payment. On scanning the QR Code and entering her UPI PIN, Sneha immediately lost INR 75000 from her account, later realizing that the QR Code was not meant for crediting but for debiting her account.

Do these cases sound familiar? Are you afraid of falling prey to a UPI Fraud due to your frequent usage of UPI Payment platforms?

  • Always remember - UPI PIN is required only to make a payment and not to receive any payment. Stop, the moment your UPI PIN is asked to receive a payment! This may actually be a payment request and not a collect request.
  • Do not share your OTP, UPI PIN or any confidential details with anyone.
  • Always verify the mobile number and name in the UPI application before initiating any payment.
  • Buyer/seller showing unreasonable haste or urgency is most likely a fraudster. Remain calm, always seek clarification and ask necessary questions.
  • Need to report a fraud? Click Here to watch the video on ‘How to report a Fraudulent Transaction?’