Crime Emergency Response Team

Kolkata transporter loses Rs 70,000 in QR code scam

A transporter who downloaded a mobile phone application so his prospective clients could hire trucks from him through it was allegedly cheated by a man who approached him on the app.

The truck owner was cheated by a man who allegedly impersonated an army officer asking for a truck to carry defence equipment from Fort William to Patna, police said.

On May 12, the imposter had shared a QR code with the complainant, Arun Kumar, and asked him to scan it to receive an advance for the transportation.

When Kumar scanned the QR code and typed his UPI (unified payments interface) ID, instead of receiving money, Rs 71,000 was debited from his bank account, he said in his police complaint.

As told by the imposter, Kumar sent one of his trucks to South Gate of Fort William to collect the consignment of equipment. As no one turned up even after waiting for quite some time, the driver enquired with officers at the gate.

They told him that no consignment was scheduled to move out of Fort William.

The money was debited from Kumar’s account while the truck driver was waiting at the Fort William gate, the police said.

Kumar first reported the matter to Hastings police station, where he was asked to go to South Port police station.

Based on his complaint, the cyber cell of the Port division took up the case and contacted the payment desk through which the money had been transferred out of Kumar’s account.

“Thanks to timely intervention, we could block the entire amount and it was refunded to the complainant,” said deputy commissioner (port), Zafar Ajmal Kidwai.

Senior police officers said their focus was on recovering the money to provide relief to the victims.

According to Lalbazar statistics, over 2,500 people have been duped of Rs 8.16 crore in banking and online frauds in Kolkata in 2021, of which the police have been able to recover Rs 3.5 crore.

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