In the present digital age, it is of paramount importance to remain vigilant about digital security. Because of digitalisation, the nature and processes of banking transactions have undergone a sea of change, allowing customers easy access to a wide slew of transactions; from the comfort of their homes either through laptops or through mobile-based apps. Be it transfer of funds, or making online payments for purchasing products, you can trust your bank for a seamless and smooth transaction. The flip side, however, is the increase in online frauds and scams.

According to data from the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), there was an increase of around 63.5% in the number of cyber crime cases in 2019. In the first nine months of 2020 – amidst the pandemic, lockdowns and beginning of the unlock phase – government data estimated that at least $6 trillion was lost because of cyber crimes. The common online frauds include phishing or making individuals reveal their key banking-related information through fraudulent calls, hacked account or mobile apps, stolen CVV and OTP number, and so on. But, don’t let the figures startle you.

Identifying a scam or a fraudster is easier than you thought. Here’s a look at how you can prevent such deceptions:

Identifying an online fraud while doing banking transactions through your smartphone

Fraudsters will typically try to gain access to your important banking information through malwares, emails or apps with embedded spyware. Don’t click on any link that appears to be suspicious, or is mailed to you from an unknown email address. Such malwares will try to lure you by providing fantastic discounts, or announcing that you have won a huge reward. Also, download only verified and trusted apps on your smartphones. You can take preventive measures, like not keeping important, banking-related information on your smartphone, disabling auto-fill feature, avoiding doing banking transactions on unsecured Wi-Fi networks and logging out after each transaction.

Identifying an online fraud while doing internet banking

Look out for fraudulent links: Fraudsters can send you emails or text messages with a link to the bank’s netbanking page. Once you click on the link, you will be redirected to a page, which can be quite similar to the bank’s official webpage. It will then ask you to enter your key net banking information, like Id and password. If you provide the details, you can be cheated, and your hard-earned money can be easily siphoned off. You must remember that banks will never send you email or text messages, with links to online banking. Never click on any suspicious link. The best way to ensure a secure online banking transaction is to type the bank’s URL in the browser.

Look out for attachments in emails: Fraudsters can send you an email with attachments. You can be promised a reward or massive discounts for downloading the attachment. But these attachments – from suspicious email addresses – could contain trojan viruses that could steal your sensitive banking information. Never download an attachment from an unverified email.

Remain vigilant: You can take preventive measures for cyber crimes and online frauds by various methods such as updating your password regularly, creating a difficult password, registering for phone banking services to receive instant alerts, and so on. It is difficult for scamsters to dupe you, if you have multiple layers of digital security. Watch out for any suspicious emails, texts, and when in doubt seek immediate clarification from the concerned banking authorities.

Identifying a fraud through phone banking

Look out for fraudsters posing as bank officials: Fraudsters will usually pose as bank officials and can then ask you the details pertaining to your bank account, credit/debit card or PAN/Aadhar number. They might tell you that your account is being updated, or the account has not been linked with Aadhar. In some cases, you might also receive a call from an unverified number, saying that your bank account has been temporarily suspended. Here, you must remember that any verified call from the bank will never ask for sensitive details such as debit/credit card number, CVV or OTP. Never reveal any confidential information to suspicious third-parties over a phone call, and report any fraudulent calls immediately to your bank.

Thus, you can easily identify a scamster by exercising due diligence. Alongside, it is important to choose a bank which has multiple layers of digital security. For instance, RBL Bank ensures safe and secure banking transactions by providing an OTP for online transactions, sending notifications and alerts for any suspicious activity and providing cutting-edge system security via firewalls, intrusion detectors and anti-malware software.

To know how to handle such fraudsters watch these videos.