A recent spurt in missed calls from international numbers on WhatsApp has left many Indian users bewildered. Reports suggest that scammers are using fake numbers and shadowy sites to lure unsuspecting individuals into fraudulent schemes involving work-from-home jobs.
According to several complaints received by Indian authorities, the scammers typically pose as businesses looking for employees to “like” certain products online. They lure people into responding by promising easy work-from-home opportunities and attractive payment packages. However, once the victim responds, they are taken down a slippery slope of deceit and financial fraud.
The loopholes in the phone number verification system of WhatsApp will also be questioned.
The scam has caught the government’s attention with Minister of State for Electronics and IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar on Thursday saying that the government would send a notice to WhatsApp. In response to the minister’s comments, a spokesperson for the company said that it has “ramped up” its artificial intelligence and machine learning system, claiming that it will eventually lead to spam calls going down by 50 per cent
Many victims have reported being defrauded of large sums of money, often running into several lakhs of rupees. Some have even lost their entire life savings.
Authorities have urged people to be cautious and not respond to such calls or messages, especially from unknown numbers. They have also advised individuals to be wary of promises of easy money or work-from-home opportunities, as many of these are often fraudulent.
The police have launched investigations into the matter and have urged people to report any such incidents immediately. They have also appealed to social media platforms to take strict action against such scams and to remove accounts involved in such fraudulent activities.
WhatsApp has also issued a statement warning users about such fraudulent schemes and advising them to report any suspicious activity. They have also assured users that they are working with law enforcement agencies to curb such activities on their platform.
The recent spurt in missed calls from international numbers has once again highlighted the need for individuals to be vigilant and cautious when responding to calls or messages from unknown numbers. It is important to remember that not everything that glitters is gold, and that easy money schemes often come with a heavy price.