Online Banking Scams: Are you a victim?

If you are a victim of an online credit card scam, then you can seek redress and relief under cyber laws.  In the recent judgement of December 2014 by Adjudicating Officer, Information Technology Act, 2000 in the case of Bal Kishen Rai.v. PNB & Ors., the Court held , that even if a victim divulges his own password by mistake in a phishing scam to a cyber criminal, in case on internet banking, he is still protected by law, and in the light of the Indian Banker’s Code 2014 read along with recent RBI Guidelines  and the principles of the US Banker’s Code, in cases of Internet Banking Frauds and Credit Card frauds a victim’s liability is restricted to Rs. 10,000 only and the loss has to be borne by the Bank. This is a principle of US Internet Banking Law which in this landmark judgement for the first time has laid the foundation of Indian Internet Banking Liability which is pro-consumers and completely protects their interests in cyber crimes.

Meaning of Online Banking Scams:

1. Where your bank account is debited by an unauthorised online transaction.

2.  Where your credit card has been used without your authorisation for any transaction.

3. Where you have given your transaction password to a scammer in response to a Phishing scam, which means you receive an email which resembles an email from a bank asking for your bank account details.

4. Where you have divulged your OTP in a Vishing scam. A vishing scam is one where a person personates a banking official and contacts you to obtain your credit card information on the pretext of generating a new PIN for you, and in the process undertakes online transactions using your credit card data and cheats you into divulging your OTP so that he can complete the transaction.

5. Where a cyber criminal uses a duplicate SIM card of your registered mobile number, and using your credit card data and due to duplicate SIM has access to OTP also.

6. Where your SIM card is cloned. SIM card cloning can happen in hotels, shops and any place where you use your credit card for a transaction, and your credit card data is stolen and a cloned credit card is made.

If you are a victim of Online Banking, then you have legal recourse under the provisions of Section 43 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 which deals with Unauthorised Access along with legal recourse against the Bank under Section 43A of the Information Technology Act for failure to protect your sensitive information and passwords, with claim for compensation upto Rs. 5 Crores.

A victim can file a complaint of the cyber crime in the prescribed format before the Adjudicating Officer, Information Technology Act, 2000 with the prescribed application fees of Rs. 50 and requisite court fees. The duration for the disposal of cyber law matters is speedy and  is within 6 to 9 months of filing the complaint.

Advocate Puneet Bhasin,

Cyber Law Expert, Cyberjure Legal Consulting

Contact.cyberjure@gmail.com

Disclaimer: The content of this article does not constitute legal advice, and does not create an Attorney-Client relationship between the author and the reader.

 

Advocate Bhasin 
on 12 January 2015
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