Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Net Banking Fraud Most Common Cybercrime

GURGAON: Higher internet connectivity in Millennium City has also given cyber crimes a bigger playing field. Of the total 759 cases of online crime recorded in the past year by the police, 248 were related to bank fraud, making it the most common among cybercrime cases registered by the police.
According to data released on Saturday, a total of 759 complaints in the past year have kept the cybercrime cell busy. Of these, 248 are related to net banking/credit/debit card fraud, followed by 72 cases of abuse on social networking sites, 68 cases of email ID hacking and 59 complaints of SMS and call abuse.
Increased number of complaints on abuse on the internet led the police to inaugurate a new cybercrime cell in the city earlier this year. Officials blame the alarming numbers on advanced technological expertise and ease of access to information. "Unlike in the preceding years, this year the number of net banking-related crimes have surpassed social media-related complaints. The vulnerability of credit and debit cards and net banking has made it easy for criminals who are just a click away from easy money. They are difficult to investigate and this is why some of the most trying cases this year belong to this category," an officer of the cybercrime cell said.
Yet, it was this year that Inspector Suresh Kumar, head of the cybercrime cell, was adjudged cyber cop of year for his work on cases of online banking fraud. Under his leadership, the department continues to spread awareness on how to beat web criminals.
The cell has approached the problem by taking students into the loop and conducting awareness drives, since they are some of the most frequent users of the Internet and easiest targets.
Complaints received
Hacking of E-mail ID: 68
Defamatory / Offensive emails: 39
Phishing/Anonymous Mails: 07
Facebook Related Complaints: 72
Twitter Related Complaints: 02
Website Hacking: 03
Fake Website: 11
Lottery Fraud: 06
Net Banking/ Credit/Debit Card Fraud: 248
Fraud/ Cheating Through Internet: 64
Forgery through Computer: 01
Cheating Through Mobile: 32
ID Theft through Internet: 10
Posting Personal Information on Internet: 13
Data Theft: 22
Abusive/Offensive/Obscene calls & SMSes: 59
Sexual Harassment/Pornography: 07
Miscellaneous Complaints: 95

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtesy : Times of India 

Monday, 30 December 2013

Don't Let Hard Disk Tempered In Cyber Crime

Integrity of data collected from the scene of cyber crime is the spine of investigation which should not be tempered with at any cost to crack the case shortly and fairly
 
This was the vital lesson Omveer Singh, Additional Director General and Scientist E, Computer Emergency and Response Team, India imparted to young police officials from 20 states during National Cyber Crime Training Programme at Police Radio Training School on Monday.
 
Director, PRTS, Varun Kapoor told dna that the officials were given practical training about cyber crime scene management. The additional director Singh taught them how to investigate as soon as any cyber crime is  reported anywhere.
 
The concept of hash-value plays vital role during investigation of cyber crime. This means recovery of evidence from the scene of crime, mainly hard disc of the computer, so that the integrity of data is not  contaminated or tempered with. Any tempering may give benefit of doubt to the suspect or accused in the court, Kapoor averred.
 
Hash-value of any computer may be tracked per second by the investigator through a software. It can  be immediately known whether the content found in the hard disc was changed or tempered with after the cyber crime was reported, he claimed.
 
Concept of maintaining hash value is helpful for investigator as counsel for accused in cyber crime may not challenge it in the court, especially in planned crimes like terrorism, financial fraud, cold blooded murders, robberies and economic offences.
 
This is for the first time that a comprehensive training of cyber crimes investigation for officials from sub inspector to DSP rank from across the country is imparted being by experts with practical knowledge in the well equipped laboratory here, the director claimed.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtesy : DNA

Friday, 27 December 2013

Only In India: Individuals Are Better Borrowers Than Companies

Money is less about numbers and more about behaviour. And somehow, we have got this behaviour right, at least in the recent past. 
 
A Hindustan Times report today notes that when it comes to borrowing, Indians are safe. According to CIBIL, the credit rating agency for individuals, about 75 percent borrowers who took loans to buy a house or car are “very safe” borrowers. While most borrowers are below the age of 35, almost 80 percent have a high credit score, making them credit worthy borrowers. 
 
But what about all those screaming headlines about ever increasing non-performing assets (NPAs) of banks? Well, those have little to do with individual borrowers and more to do with corporates. Most individual borrowers stick to their repayment schedule. Remember, paying bills on time means a high credit score. 
 
In fact, when it comes to paying our credit card dues, we pay outstanding balances on time and do not revolve credit, at least not as much as we used to. In a recent interaction, Jairam Sridharan, president and head (consumer lending and payments), Axis Bank, told Firstpost, “Credit card customers are revolving credit far less today than a few years back. The rates have fallen form around 50 percent in 2005 to 15 percent now.”
 
He added that the awareness of credit rating agencies and hence the important of a good credit score is making borrowers pay their bills on time, even within the interest free period. 
 
Decrease in the rate of revolving credit does not mean that we are spending less on card. The total spends on card have increased, but the bills are also getting paid on time. In fact, unlike a few years back when most of us were borrowing the bad type of debt (unsecured like a personal loan), now more are borrowing to fund their house or a car. Financial planners consider house as good debt. The HT report too observed this trend. In 2006, 69 percent first-time borrowers took credit for personal loan and credit card spends. Now, 62 percent first-time borrowers take credit to fund a house or car. 
 
Where does this responsible borrowing and repayment behaviour come from? Sridharan told Firstpost that before the economic meltdown in 2008, many took credit without much thought. But after  2008  there was an economic slowdown, people started losing jobs and defaulted on their loans. This made them bad borrowers and hence getting loans became difficult. Slowly, this lead to realisation of the importance of a good repayment history, credit score and responsible credit utilisation. 
 
Traditionally, Indians are known to be debt averse. In fact, until a few years back taking debt or karza was looked down up on. Now this is changing for the better. But, will this continue? Only time can tell. 
But as of now, unlike an average American who carries an average 11 credit cards in his pocket, we have managed to modify out credit behaviour in the right direction.  And, let's hope it continues to be so.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtesy : First Post 

Thursday, 26 December 2013

Online Fraud 3rd Most Prevalent Economic Crime In India: Survey

With the increasing use of social media and personal devices in the workplace, cyber crime is now the third most prevalent economic crime in India. This rise, attributed largely to insiders, may have a correlation to the tendency of professionals here to flout a company’s IT policies more often compared to those in other countries, say experts.
 
According to the Global Economic Crime Survey, 2011, conducted by accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers earlier this month, cyber crime came third in the list of common economic crimes in the country, following asset misappropriation and corruption. About a quarter of the respondents stated that they had been victims of such crimes in the past 12 months and half opined that such threats were on the rise.
 
“We studied 3,877 respondents globally and 106 companies in India. Cyber crime has emerged as one of the top four types of economic crimes here. Frequent advancements in technology are increasing the universe of cyber crime. Moreover, increased media attention around recent cyber crime cases has lead to a heightened awareness on this type of fraud,” says PwC India’s forensic services leader Vidya Rajarao.
 
While PwC's study found that 47% of respondents attribute such crimes to insiders, the Cisco Connected World Technology Report released last week, found that in India, almost 80% of the surveyed employees break their organisation's IT regulations all the time, putting businesses at risk. This was the highest figure amongst several economies such as the United States, Russia, China, Autralia, and the UK. The global average for the same was 70%.
 
“The desire for on-demand access to information is so engrained in the incoming generation of employees that many young professionals take extreme measures to access the internet, even if it compromises their company's or their own security. Such behaviour includes secretly using neighbours' wireless connections, sitting in front of businesses to access free Wi-Fi networks and borrowing other's devices without supervision,” said VC Gopalratnam, vice-president, information technology & chief information officer, globalisation, Cisco.
 
Despite such rampant flouting of regulations, monitoring of cyber crimes, training on security and awareness among personnel continued to be low. A large percentage in the Cisco poll did not believe breaking IT rules was wrong, while several others said they did it because “their bosses weren’t watching”, or because it was necessary to get work done. A two-third of the respondents in PwC’s study did not have access to forensic technology needed for combating cyber crime, while 35% did not have any cyber security training in the last 12 months. At the board level, it was found that 35% of the respondents reviewed cyber security risks on an ad-hoc basis, or not at all; while 26% were not aware of the top management's involvement in the matter.
 
“Statistics indicate that senior managements in Indian companies do not place enough emphasis on managing cyber threats and frauds. Although the CIO is usually responsible for IT security risks, the CEO and the board should understand and probe into the risk of cyber crime,” the PwC report stated.
 
However, some say that Indian companies have become more proactive with cyber threats than before, although ensuring security is a bigger challenge than ever. Manohar Ganshani, practice partner, governance, risk and compliance, Wipro Consulting Services, says, “Indian companies are definitely focusing a lot more on cyber security issues now, but there are challenges in dealing with them. First, the pace at which technologies evolve is tremendous, and new threats arise everyday. Maintaining and managing threats on a constant basis is a daunting task. Enforcing policies, having mechanisms to check effectiveness of policies and spreading awareness is also something firms have to work on.” Wipro Consulting recently conducted the ‘CSO Outlook 2011’, studying challenges and priorities of chief security officers in India.
 
Employees, on the other hand, believe companies need to be more flexible in IT policies and give them more space in terms of usage of social media and devices. Cisco found that while not many employees find policies to be unfair, a large majority across countries feel their IT policies needs some improvement and updating.
 
Besides working professionals, college students awaiting to to start their careers also hoped for liberal IT policies from prospective employers. Cisco, which surveyed 1,400 college students, found 60% of them in India expected flexible and open-minded IT regulations that allowed them to stay connected to their work and and personal lives at the same time. A mere 17% said that they would abide by the policies issued by employers. “Employees joining the work force today belong to the 'digital generation' and are used to being connected at all times. They expect their employers to give them unfettered access to the Internet and also the freedom to use their own devices, for both personal and official purposes,” said Gopalratnam of Cisco.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy

CS Identity Shield is a product of Credit Sudhaar with helps individuals protect against various types of Identity theft, Cyber crime and Credit card fraud. 

Courtesy : Financial Express

Thursday, 19 December 2013

How To Avoid Online Identity Theft

In today's cyber world, where most of your personal information is online, it's easy for fraudsters to steal and misuse it. Here's a look at the way they can trick you and what you can do to protect yourself.
 
How your identity can be stolen?
 
SHOULDER SURFING
 
As the name suggests, it's simply someone looking over your shoulder or using a mobile phone to click a photo while you are using your credit card, keying in your PIN at an ATM, filling up important information in a form or cheque, or just typing your password.
 
WIRELESS IDENTITY THEFT
 
Also known as RFID (radio frequency identification) theft, it steals the personal information that is stored on cards with RF chips embedded in them, such as your office ID tags.
 
PHARMING
 
A domain is hijacked by a criminal, who then steals the data of any user who accesses the website.
 
MALWARE
 
It stands for malicious software and includes anything that can be used to gain access to your PC and steal data from it. This could be through spyware, keyloggers, Trojan horse, adware, worm or virus. It disguises itself as something innocuous and stays hidden in your PC.
 
PHISHING
 
An e-mail from a seemingly reliable and known source will direct you to a phony website that looks legitimate. It will ask you to input personal and financial data to access the site, and then steal that information.
 
VISHING
 
A fraudster pretends to call up from your bank or service provider claiming to need your personal details because they are upgrading you or updating data.
 
SKIMMING
 
The secret information in the magnetic strip of your credit/debit card is copied and then used on a counterfeit card.
 
SMISHING
 
You will receive a text message on your mobile phone informing you of a service that you have signed up for or stopped. If you click on the link provided or call the number given, you will be told that you can proceed only after providing essential information.
 
How to protect yourself?
 
Here are 8 ways to be vigilant and safeguard your identity.
 
TEAR IT UP
 
Scrutinise all correspondence from financial institutions and shred it . Ensure all such e-mails are protected by passwords. Tear your ATM slips and cancelled cheques, don't just crumple them when you throw them in the trash.
 
WIPE EVERYTHING
 
Before disposing of your old gadgets, completely wipe out the memory or any data on it. Even an SMS or mail from your bank can be misused. Remove sensitive data before lending your phone, laptop or pen drives.
 
CALL BACK
 
Don't give out personal details no matter who calls you up. Log in to the website or call the customer care yourself. Bookmark websites used often so that you can access them directly rather than through a 'phishy' e-mail.

VIRTUAL PASSWORDS
 
Use virtual keyboards to input your passwords. Change these frequently and use different ones for various websites. Hackers access online forums or blogs to hack passwords because people usually use the same passwords for everything.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtesy : Economic Times 

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

ATM Attacks

It's any time money not just for depositors but also for thieves.
 
If India puts not just a man on the moon but also the first ATM, the next day's headlines could announce that the money withdrawn by the country's first lunar bank customer was swiped seconds later by an anonymous compatriot who had managed to get there on his own steam.
 
ATM thefts are one area where India is not lagging behind the developed world. It's not just in Japan that there are reports of the yakuza (gangsters) using trucks with sophisticated construction equipment to uproot ATMs. India's Silicon Valley of Bangalore has also witnessed amateurish attempts to carry away ATMs, lock, stock and barrel.
 
And so what if, according to some media reports, India holds the record for the world's highest installed ATM some 4,000 metres above sea level and around the Nathu La Pass in Sikkim. There are also reports that the Agricultural Bank of China has installed the world's highest ATM at around 4,500 m in Tibet. There are no reports however of the highest ATM theft. Whether the record is jointly held by Chindia is not known.
 
ATMs are hitting the headlines for all the wrong reasons. It is not just the customer who no longer has to go to the bank to withdraw money but can swipe a smart card (with an embedded chip containing a unique number) at an ATM. Likewise, instead of holding up a bank like the gangster John Dillinger used to do in the days of the Great Depression in America, the 21st-century thief can source his daily requirements by swiping someone else's money at the nearest friendly neighbourhood ATM which is open 24x7.
 
The ATM has not just enabled the individual customer to have transactions with his own account without accessing the bank's entire database. It has also decentralised bank thefts since the individual thief can operate at a micro level and swipe someone else's hard-earned money by circumventing the customer-identity integrity systems by attaching fake keypads or card-readers on ATMs, to record confidential data like the depositor's PIN. Technological devices have been developed to detect foreign objects on ATMs.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtsey : Times of India 

Monday, 16 December 2013

Cyber Crime Offenders Getting Younger, Shows NCRB Data

Nearly 60 per cent of those arrested for the cyber crimes - hacking, obscene publications and forgery, among others —- belong to the age group of 18-30 years, data released by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) show.
 
According to NCRB, between 2008 and 2011, 1,184 persons were arrested for various cyber crimes, which are on the rise.
 
"Most offenders belong to the younger generation. They are more aware of the ways and means through which they can exploit cyber space and come from a variety of backgrounds," Additional Deputy Commissioner (Economic Offences Wing) S D Mishra said.
 
The records also show that hacking cases have increased substantially over the period, from 56 to 826 cases. Half of those arrested in these cases were in the 18-30 age group.
 
Hacking is not defined in the IT Act, 2000, but falls under Section 66 of Computer Related offences, which carries a maximum sentence of three years' imprisonment.
 
Cases under obscene publications climbed to 496 cases in 2011, with 63.6 per cent of offenders from the same age group. This offence also carries a three-year imprisonment term.
 
"While cases related to obscene publications have risen, the important thing to note is that none of these cases were related to child pornography," Mishra said.
 
Forgery cases rose by over 400 per cent between 2008 and 2011, the NCRB data has revealed.
 
"There are a surge in the number of reported cases over the years because people are becoming more aware of these things. More number of people are reporting these crimes, especially in instances where there was a financial loss," he said.
 
Mishra said most cases registered dealt with internet banking and credit card frauds.
 
"Cyber investigations are often inhibited if offenders are working from an overseas location. This leads to jurisdiction issues and we are unable to get information from a foreign Internet service provider. But we have a full-fledged forensics lab with the latest equipment to handle such matters," Mishra said.
 
In cases which demand expertise in a particular encryption code or a unique data storage system, law enforcement agencies often use the services of private security firms such as Pyramid Cyber Security & Forensics, which specialises in solving such cases.
 
"Cooperation between countries become crucial in such cases," Managing Director of Pyramid Cyber Security & Forensics Alok Gupta said, referring to an agency called IMPACT (International Multilateral Partnership against Cyber Crime). IMPACT, a not-for-profit organisation with 195 member countries, acts as the cyber security arm of the United Nations and helps in countering cyber threats.
 
"Cyber crime cases are sensitive subjects. Not everyone would like to openly speak or admit that such a crime has taken place. If, for example, a bank was to report a cyber crime, the customers will be apprehensive about putting their money there," Gupta said.
 
According to Gupta, malware without signatures, cloud adoption and mobile devices are what pose a threat to cyber security.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtesy : Indian Express

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Create Awareness Among Consumers On Credit Scores: RBI

The Reserve Bank of India has urged credit information companies (CICs) to create awareness among consumers about credit behaviour and credit scores to manage their finances better.
 
Delivering the keynote address at the fourth annual CIBIL Credit Information Conference here on Tuesday, J. Sadakkadulla, Regional Director (Chennai), RBI, said: “The key deliverable for CICs in the coming days would be to facilitate a smoother credit decision-making process and, thereby, bring down the cost of financial transactions and credit intermediation in the financial system for the benefit of the masses.”
 
Observing that credit information has enabled faster access to credit from financial institutions, he said, “India stands at a decent 28th rank amongst 189 countries on the ease of getting credit and has the best ranking amongst the BRICS economies — China is at 73, both Russia and Brazil are at rank 109.
 
However, he pointed out that though India has a large workforce with rising disposable incomes, the extent of credit penetration is still quite low compared to global standards. One of the reasons for this is the information asymmetry between the lender and the borrower. Emphasising the need for a genuine database, he urged scheduled commercial banks, non-banking finance companies and housing finance companies to submit accurate data on regular basis. “The use of CIC inputs during the credit appraisal process at lending institutions can only be effective if the data is up-to-date,” Sadakkadulla said.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtesy : The Hindu Businessline

Friday, 13 December 2013

Man Uses Fake Credit Cards, Held

COIMBATORE: The cybercrime cell of the city police arrested a 25-year-old man on Tuesday evening for purchasing 27 mobile phones worth Rs7.97lakh using fake credit cards from Poorvika Mobiles Private Limited in the city.
 
The arrested person has been identified as P Bhubalan from RNTC Colony in Dindigul. Police said, he was approached by Karthi from Chennai at the Dindigul bus stand during the first week of November, who told him to purchase mobile phones using the credit cards he provided.
 
Bhubalan was promised Rs 5,000 each time the card was swiped. On November 28, Bhubalan had gone to Poorvika mobile showroom at Ramanathapuram and bought eight mobile phones using the said credit cards. Likewise, he purchased 27 mobile phones from various showrooms belonging to Poorvika Mobiles in the city. The staff of one showroom became suspicious of him and found that he was using fake credit cards. They handed him over to the police who arrested him.
 
"When Bhubalan gave the mobile phones to Karthi, we suspected that the latter was the mastermind behind the fraud," said Manikumar, sub-inspector of police, cyber crime cell.
 
"Fake credit card makers use skimmer machines and collect information on credit cards. The fake cards are made abroad and then sent to agents in India. This is a big network and we are trying to arrest Karthi," said P Chandramohan, assistant commissioner of police, city crime branch.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy

Courtesy : Times of India

Thursday, 12 December 2013

India's Information Technology Act Has Not Been Effective In Checking Cyber Crime: Expert

India has of late witnessed a rise in cyber crime and experts attribute this to a "toothless" Information Technology (IT) Act that has been ineffective in tackling the problem.
 
India has of late witnessed a rise in cyber crime and experts attribute this to a "toothless" Information Technology (IT) Act that has been ineffective in tackling the problem.
 
"The IT Act has not at all been effective in checking cyber crime. In fact, it is a toothless wonder in the fight against cyber crime," Supreme Court lawyer and leading cyber law expert Pavan Duggal said.
 
Duggal stressed the need for overhauling the cyber security legal regime in the country.
 
"A historical mistake was made when the IT (Amendment) Act, 2008, made almost all cyber crimes, barring a couple, bailable offences. The focus is more on enhancing the quantum of civil liability and reducing the quantum of punishment, which explains the reason why the number of cyber crime convictions in the country is in single digits," he said.
 
The government had enacted the original IT legislation in 2000. The IT (Amendment) Act came into force in 2009 and was aimed at facilitating e-governance, preventing cyber crime and fostering security practices within the country.
 
Expressing similar views, techno-legal expert Praveen Dalal said the country's cyber security needs immediate restructuring.
 
"Cyber security is still trying to catch up with cyber criminals and much needs to be done in this regard. The act deserves a complete restructuring as it is creating trouble for law-abiding people and is weak for cyber criminals," Dalal said.
 
According to the National Crimes Record Bureau, 4,231 cyber crimes were registered under the IT Act and cyber crime-related sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) during 2009-11.
 
A total of 1,184 people were arrested under the IT Act for cyber crimes, while 446 people were arrested under IPC sections.
 
At least 157 cases were registered for hacking under the IT Act in 2011, while 65 people were arrested.
 
Rikshit Tandon, adviser to the Cyber Crime Unit of the Uttar Pradesh Police, says amendments to the IT Act covered much of the offences, but in view of the modus operandi employed in such crimes, the Act needs to be more "rigid and practical".
 
"The amendments made to the act in 2008 have covered a lot of offences but considering the modus operandi in these crimes I feel it needs to be more rigid and practical," Tandon said.
 
Agreeing with the government's approach of blocking certain offending websites or webpages, Tandon said: "Any page, website or content going against religion or the country's security needs to be blocked or pulled down."
 
Last year, thousands of people from the northeast fled some south Indian states in panic after threats of violence. The exodus was the result of a fake video which went viral on social networking websites.
 
"For the last 12 years, the Act is in effect and now it has gathered steam. I would say it is effective in metropolitan cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Bhopal, Bangalore, etc, but it is feeble in tier-two level cities as awareness of the law by enforcement agencies remains a big challenge," cyber law and cyber security expert Prashant Mali said.
 
He, however, termed the government's blocking of webpages and websites as "unconstitutional", saying such an action only served the government's "own good".
 
"Yes, the law has provisions which empower the government to do so. Now, the larger point is there have to be rules in democracy and the government should come clean by drafting such rules, to block websites so they do not ingress fundamental rights like freedom of speech," Mali contended.
 
Experts assert that there is a need to not only put in place appropriate institutional mechanisms but also focus on effective responses to cyber emergencies.
 
Strengthening the IT Act
* The IT (Amendment) Act, 2008, reduced the quantum of punishment for a majority of cyber crimes. This needs to be rectified.
 
* The majority of cyber crimes need to be made non-bailable offences.
 
* The IT Act does not cover a majority of crimes committed through mobiles. This needs to be rectified.
 
* A comprehensive data protection regime needs to be incorporated in the law to make it more effective.
 
* Detailed legal regime needed to protect privacy of individuals and institutions.
 
* Cyber war as an offence needs to be covered under the IT Act.
 
* Parts of Section 66A of the IT Act are beyond the reasonable restrictions on freedom of speech and expression under the Constitution of India. These need to be removed to make the provisions legally sustainable.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtesy : DNA

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

'Punching Debit Card PIN At Shops May Be Risky'

NAVI MUMBAI: As per the guidelines of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), effective from December 1. The debit card holders will have to punch in their personal identification number (PIN) every time at Point-of-Sales (PoS) at merchant outlets to minimize frauds.
 
But many bankers as well as merchants in the city pointed out that this is far from fool-proof and the system has an alleged drawback of lack of privacy.
 
First, the debit card holders will have to enter the PIN of their ATM cards in the swipe machine and then sign on the transaction slip, for any purchase at any shop.
 
This may prove to be risky, as thieves may misuse the system by keeping an eye during the swipe, memorize the PIN, clone the card to easily withdraw large sums of cash from any nearby ATM .
 
But it has been found that none of the merchant outlets in the city have made arrangement for privacy of the customers while punching the ATM PIN while purchasing goods.
 
Glenn Serrao, the son of a hotel owner in sector 17, Vashi, said, "Debit and credit cards are accepted only on the first floor of our restaurant premises. Around 80% of our regular customers do not mind revealing their PIN to the waiters, who in turn, swipe the cards to pay the bill and issue the payment slip for the customer's signature. If any customer demands privacy to punch their PIN, then we will surely provide that service."
 
Pradeep Kumar, the manager of IDBI bank, Vashi branch said, "Logically, due to lack of privacy at shops, there is a possibility of misuse of the system. Now, to resolve this alleged lacunae in the customer service, our bank will suggest to our product team that the shops need to provide a secluded place for the ATM card swipe machine which should offer adequate privacy for the customer while punching his/her PIN." The product team will then forward the suggestion to the RBI authorities for corrective measures in the guidelines.
 
"Anyone who thinks that this system can be misused by miscreants, should come forward with their suggestions on the RBI's website, as well," added Kumar.
 
Susaant Patnaaik (41), an LIC consultant said, "The need for privacy to use one's debit or even credit card is a must. The swipe machine should be kept separately near the establishment manager's counter and be hidden by a partition to prevent onlookers from reading the secret digits being punched by the customer. "
 
Patnaaik also said that the banks have warned their ATM debit card holders not to read out or enter their PIN when someone is standing behind them.
 
"One must never swipe in front of any onlookers to ensure the safety of their card," he added.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

CS Identity Shield a product of Credit Sudhaar helps individuals from Identity Theft, Cyber Crime and Credit card fraud

Courtesy : Times of India 

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Home Loans, New Risk Area For Banks?

Banks are getting more careful in disbursing home loans – picking people with higher credit scores, for example – as property prices rise to unsustainable levels.
 
“Banks have become prudent and are looking at improving the health of their portfolio,” said Arun Thukral, managing director, Credit Information Bureau (India) Ltd, or Cibil.
 
“Who they lend to has also seen a major shift,” he said. “Earlier, they were lending to a person with a Cibil credit score of 600-700 to buy a house. Today, 60% of the home loans are given to people who have a score of at least 800.”
 
Indians are getting more leveraged than they were a decade back as salary increases have not kept pace with spike in home prices, burdening them with larger monthly loan payments. Experts fear that a more leveraged consumer, coupled with inflated home prices, can pose a risk to banks’ balance sheets.
 
Home prices in the metros have doubled in the last five years despite an economic downturn, according to data released by the National Housing Bank.
 
“The business is therefore prone to asset quality pressures, particularly if collateral values of the two most popular products – residential mortgage and gold loans – were to fall significantly,” said Ananda Bhoumik, analyst, India Ratings & Research.
 
Indian banks have changed gears in recent past, sharpening focus on retail loans as credit off-take on the corporate side remains subdued and uncertain. As such, consumer loans are considered a safer option as corporate bad loans soar in the sluggish economy. But there’s no undermining the risk here, too.
 
“Banks will have to recognise that retail credit comes with its own risks, exposing them to individuals in large volumes as against one corporate loan. The whole appraisal process and risk underwriting process has to recognise that,” said Satish Mehta, co-founder and director at Credexpert, a credit counselling company.
 
Though the mortgage-to-gross domestic product ratio remains low at 7% in India, most of the loan amount is skewed towards urban India. While no one expects property or gold prices to come crashing down any time soon, credit bureaus recognise the systemic risk.
 
“If the price of the collateral falls, then the risk that banks are carrying definitely goes up,” said Mohan Jayaraman, managing director at Experian Credit Information Company of India Pvt Ltd. “Due to this, many mortgage lenders are also getting into the theme of saying that they will do smaller ticket lending and the whole affordable housing thing is being taken more seriously now.”

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtesy : DNA

Monday, 9 December 2013

Keeping Your Credit Card Safe Online

RAIPUR: With hacking of Facebook, gmail and other networking websites on rise, threat of credit card/debit card bank accounts also being hacked looms large in state. Online shopping has further increased this threat.
 
Monendra Sahu, an ethical hacker said, "For hackers, carding, which refers to credit card/debit card fraud is the new duplicity that has made significant rise in state. Hackers have been using credit card/debit card numbers of people to carry out financial transactions for their personal benefits".
 
Online shopping/banking by users provides the easiest way for hackers to swindle money. "Whenever a user buys anything from the website, he enters his card details to make payment. This becomes an easy gateway for the hacker to trace card details and he gets access to all users who have used that website, by hacking it." Monendra said.
 
"It has also been observed that the hacker traces around 1000 or even more credit card/debit card numbers and carries out his transaction withdrawing around Rs 4000-5000 from each account. However, this risk is a bit lesser in an online bank account as in this; the user directly enters the bank website."
 
In fact, with new techniques coming in, hackers have even evolved a technique of scheming, in which they implant a device in the ATM machine or the POS portal and get card details. "A device which can be stuck with Fevikwik, is used by the hackers. It becomes difficult to differentiate between the device and ATM machine."
 
"Majorly, in the old ATM machines, which can be easily opened from back-side, hackers can easily process it by a pen-drive. It's easier to open the machine and inject a processed pen-drive which will take the card details of users who have carried out their transaction throughout the day. However the newly developed machines aren't much vulnerable," he added.
 
"Hackers try to use cyber cafes, where they can get in touch with a large number of users and with an open wi-fi connection which it make things easier for them," he added.
 
Users guide
 
* Change the pin of ATM card after getting the pin. Try to have a locked Wi-fi network however LAN cable would be even more secure.
 
* Stop using free anti-virus.
 
* Always use updated system for your laptop/computer.
 
* Use websites with HTTPS communication protocol which give encrypted password.

Credit Sudhaar is India's first Credit Health management & improvement company whose goal is to help clients to Restore, Enhance and Protect their Credit and make them credit healthy.

Courtesy : Times of India