From our Staff Correspondent
SHILLONG, July 11: If one goes through the statements narrated by the victims whose money were fraudulently withdrawn from their account through an ATM, customers should not allow fellow customers to be in the same booth at the same time.
Recent police diary in Shillong revealed that fraudsters have adopted a new tactic to siphon the money from an ATM. The fraudster will stand at the ATM queue just next to a vulnerable person. While the customer is typing the secret code, he takes note of the number. The fraud then knocks the person at a time when the ATM card is ejected to ensure that it falls down. The fraudster immediately helps, picks up the card and hands over a wrong one which is already in his hand. The next step is to use the card to withdraw the money.
This is what happened to Terence Lyngshkor and Biona Kharumnuid last week. Lyngshkor realized that his ATM card was exchanged after he went to withdraw money through an ATM. He crosschecked his account through a passbook and found that Rs 27,000 has been withdrawn.
Similar is the case of Kharumnuid who found that Rs 1,48,000 has been fraudulently withdrawn from his account on similar circumstances. Based on the FIR, the police have lodged a case and investigation is on.
There were other reported cases of fraudulent withdrawals of money through individual ATM cards. Nongshken MLA Don K Massar was one of the victims last month.
Although, the police have unearthed that most cases of fraudulent withdrawal of money through a personal ATM were traced to family members, these reported episodes in Shillong is something that they wanted to crack.
“The reported cases can be cracked if the bank authorities provide us the CCTV image”, stated a senior police officer while lamenting on the banks inability to provide the recorded images on the customers movement at a given listed data of transaction.
Mentionably, gangs of organized robbers adopted a different technique in Shillong city. They would pin-point people with bags who enter the ATM and use a chewed biscuit to throw at a possible victim. Alert the victim that there is dirt to ensure that he/she keeps down the bag to attend to the dirt and the accomplice will lift the bag at a time of the distraction. The gang was busted and now a different gang is on the prowl, admitted the police officer involved in the investigation.