It was certainly a terrible day for a software employee in Hyderabad. He did not get the food he had craved for, and also ended up losing Rs 50,000 money to online fraudsters.
On Sunday, the victim, a resident of Rahmat Nagar in Jubilee Hills ordered ‘special chicken biryani’ on food delivery app- Zomato. However, the order got misplaced and he got ‘sambar rice’ instead. Infuriated with the service, the victim searched for the customer care contact online to share his grievance. A casual Google search threw up a number for Zomato customer care, when in reality, Zomato does not have a customer care number.
The fraud “customer care” service was polite to the victim and regretted their bad service. They also convinced him that they would refund the money immediately. After finding out the customer had a Paytm account, the “customer care executive” shared a link of the QR (quick response) code to be scanned for the refund. As guided, the customer scanned the QR code and realized that instead of the refund amount being credited, Rs 50,000 got debited from his account, Hyderabad cyber crimes Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) KVM Prasad told TNM.
The ACP said that the victim got deceived by a phishing page which had listed its contact under the guise of Zomato customer care. Police have registered a case under section 420 of IPC and 66 D of the IT Act (punishment for cheating by impersonation using computer resource). The investigation is going on, the ACP said.
While usually, fraudsters make calls pretending to be customer care executives, this new modus operandi of online fraud has been prevalent for a few months.
Police said that the QR code scam is on the rise in the city and cautioned citizens against scanning the QR code when instructed by the “customer care.”
Meanwhile, Zomato had said earlier, "We constantly remind our users via different channels of communication that we do not have a customer care number. Chat and email are our primary channels of care. While we take every effort to ensure customer safety and security, we also urge our esteemed customers to be vigilant and not share their personal or bank account details with anyone."
So, don't search for 'Zomato customer care'. They don't have one.