The Delhi Police has arrested 17 people for allegedly running a fake call centre duping foreign nationals in the name of Microsoft technical support, officials said on Friday.
The accused have been identified as Sahil Dilavari (27), Sehaj Soin (23), Chaitanya Chugh (25), Yogesh Chopra (22), Nitin Kumar (23), Gurdit Singh (25), Sukesh Kumar (31), Naman Arora (23), Sanjoy Pal (23), Dipendra Singh (27), Sudhir Sharma (32), Mayank Tiwari (35), Gaurav Somi (32), Avtar Singh (30), Syrel Sam David (23) Ayush Chaudhary (28) and Umang Manchanda (25), they said.
A total of 2,268 people were duped between October 11, 2019 to November 5, 2020 of USD 1,081,365 (over Rs 8 crore) by them, police said.
Police received a complaint that an illegal international call centre was being operated from Rajouri Garden from where unsuspecting people residing in foreign countries are being cheated in the name of providing technical support by Microsoft Inc, a senior police officer said.
"Thereafter, a raid was conducted at the premises and the accused persons were found operating a fake call centre from where calls were being made to unsuspecting people in foreign countries and they were being cheated by the accused pretending to be from Microsoft Inc," Deputy Commissioner of Police (CyPAD) Anyesh Roy.
At the time of the raid, the accused were trying to dupe a female doctor residing in the US. The call was taken by police and the victim was briefed about the scam, the DCP said.
Dilavari is the main accused and has been operating the fake call centre for the last three years. The victims of the racket are from foreign countries, police said.
The accused used to send pop-ups to the computers of people that their systems have been compromised and they should call at the given phone number for technical assistance by Microsoft. When a person would call, the accused pretended to be from a Microsoft technical assistance team and ask him to give remote access of his computer, the DCP said.
Thereafter, they would tell the victim that several malicious programmes, including malwares, spywares, etc., have been found in his system. They further cautioned the victim that their banking credentials might be compromised if immediate remedial steps are not taken, Mr Roy said.
The victim agreed to pay the amount as asked by the accused. The payment was made to shell companies in the US and Canada from where it was wired to the accused's bank accounts in India, he said. After receiving the payment, the accused would tell the victim that his computer is now free from malwares.
The accused also put up ads on the internet asking people to call on their toll free numbers for support by HP technical team for printer installation, police said.
When any victim, facing technical difficulties during installation of a printer, would call on the given number, the accused would ask for remote access of the computer and carry on their modus operandi, the police added.