Some people are aware of it. Some people still have not heard of it.
And some people have become victims of it.
This is a story you must have read most recently in the newspapers.
Of a man who innocently responded to an e-mail from a private Indian bank of which he was a customer, shared confidential information assuming the e-mail was genuine and found that a fraud had been committed on him.
The city police to whom he complained is now investigating this case. Fraudsters and con men have been with us always.
They adopt the tricks that go well with modern living.
And in this technology-driven age, they phish.
There were times when con men used to present themselves as telephone inspectors, domestic gas suppliers, electricity foremen and income-tax officials.
Today, the easy way to cheating and quick money is via the internet. However, lots of people are in the dark about the tricks, frauds and con jobs of our times.
Some become victims. Often these people are senior citizens.
While banks, companies, state agencies and NGOs put out warnings, tips and briefings to empower people/customers, perhaps experience sharing may also help?
Would it help if the media published stories of the ‘distressing’ experiences of people? Not to show them up as victims but to focus more on the modus operandi of con people and the dangers around us.
I recall times when our newspapers used to receive letters from readers who wrote about attempts to cheat/dupe made by men disguised as telephone department staff to dupe neighbours.
Or of youths who acted like Indane gas suppliers and made off with valuables after they had gained entry into a house or an apartment.
Every now and then, there would be letters on this subject talking about attempted con jobs or of some new tricks that had been played on a resident of the colony.
In some ways, the publication of such experiences educates the neighbourhood; alerts them perhaps. What do you think?
The rash of crimes related to land grabbing in the suburbs and peri-urban areas of our city continue. Are we aware of how people who own land outside the city are victims of fraud?
Meanwhile, a charming lady who has just lost her rich father in Sierra Leone has e-mailed us. She wonders if we can come to her rescue and if all goes well, be the recipients of a goodly sum of American dollars.
Am sure this charming lady has e-mailed you too!
Phishing at work.