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Shocking! SIM cards from Kerala used for Chinese cyber fraud; probe on

In Kerala, arrests related to a cyber fraud scheme reveal a network supplying SIM cards for illicit use, coordinated with a Chinese fraud group operating from abroad. The police apprehended two individuals involved in the scam.

Shocking! SIM cards from Kerala used for Chinese cyber fraud investigation begins anr
First Published Jun 23, 2024, 10:46 AM IST

Thiruvananthapuram: In a shocking disclosure, a group operating in Kerala has been found supplying SIM cards to Chinese organizations engaged in cyber fraud through foreign call centers. These SIM cards are obtained using fake IDs, facilitating fraudulent activities. Central and state agencies have launched investigations targeting this group. Police have already apprehended two individuals in connection with this incident. The fraud scheme involves sending messages and making calls from Kerala-based numbers, enticing people to engage in activities like befriending or participating in the stock market through media.

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The caller, often a Malayali, may not be located in India despite appearing so. These calls originate from call centers operated by Chinese teams based in Cambodia, Myanmar, and Laos. Additionally, there is a network in Kerala involved in supplying SIM cards to Malayalis employed in these fraudulent operations. Central intelligence agencies have provided information indicating that a case involving an online fraud amounting to Rs 3.5 lakh was reported in Thrissur, during an ongoing investigation by the Cyber ​​Division of the Kerala Police. The police verified the call made by the complainant in the case registered at Mala station.

The call originated from a SIM card registered under the name of an individual in Kollam who was not involved in the scam. Subsequent investigations traced the connection to Vishnu, a resident of Varkala, who sells SIM cards. Vishnu was taken into police custody and questioned. During interrogation, Vishnu revealed that he had provided SIM cards to a fake address for someone named Mufliq, who was associated with a Chinese fraud group.

Mufliq had acquired over 500 SIM cards across various locations in Kerala using the method described. From abroad, Mufliq used these SIM cards to download the WhatsApp app using OTPs provided by Vishnu, subsequently engaging in fraudulent activities. The police successfully apprehended Mufliq upon his return from abroad. During interrogation, Mufliq provided crucial information about the Chinese gang operating overseas. Both Vishnu and Mufliq have been arrested in connection with the case so far.

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