Data safety needs standard framework

Sunil Pradhan
Tuesday, 15 January 2019

“Be it a shopping mall or a restaurant everyone is asking for your personal data. The important thing is to keep your data safe. In restaurants, people ask you to share your name, phone number, wedding anniversary date, birth date and other details which are then copied in a register which can be used by any fraudster." Speaking on the issue, cyber expert Niranjan Reddy

PUNE: Recently, a 68-year-old man received a message on his phone that if he wants to protect himself from financial fraud, he will have to put off his phone for 24 hours. The old man did the same as instructed in the message as the message stated that it is from the customer care department of his bank. A day later when the old man switched on his mobile phone he came to know that Rs 99,999 was debited from his account. The victim then approached the Chatuhshrungi police station and lodged a case of cheating.

In another incident, a 31-year-old man Jayant Darekar received a phone call in which the caller told Jayant that seeing his past loan records the finance company is offering him more loan. The caller instructed Jayant to transfer Rs 2.31 lakh to avail a loan of Rs 8 lakh. The victim did the same and transferred the amount only to find that he was scammed.

In both these incidents, the fraudster was well aware of all personal details of victims before scamming them. The Cyber Crime Cell of the city police crime branch this year has received over 7,000 cases of cybercrime.

With the rising incidents of cybercrime, it has become essential for people to get aware of such crimes which also highlights the need for people to keep their data safe. To tackle the menace cyber experts have pointed out the need for strict legislation and regulation in the industry so that personal data of people is safe which can further prevent them from being scammed.

Speaking on the issue, cyber expert Niranjan Reddy, who is also the founder of Netconclave System, said that there are various agencies where people are been asked to share their data. “Be it a shopping mall or a restaurant everyone is asking for your personal data. The important thing is to keep your data safe. In restaurants, people ask you to share your name, phone number, wedding anniversary date, birth date and other details which are then copied in a register which can be used by any fraudster. Hence, there is a need to make strict laws so that agencies are penalised if the data of people is compromised. The social media is another place where a fraudster can get data of his victim. Fraudsters collect data and do profiling before launching their attack,” added Reddy.

The expert also highlighted that many companies are outsourcing their work to third-party vendors and so the agreement between them should have policies related to data privacy.

Another cyber expert Anil Raj of Cybervault Securities Solutions Private Limited said that data of people is indeed being compromised at various stages. 

“The personal data is sold for different rates and is available on the Internet. I have received emails of data sellers. The matter is serious and so, the earlier the data protection bill is passed the better it will be for the people,” added Raj.

The cyber expert added that people should think several times before parting with their data. 

“We have hundreds of examples in which people get scammed. We have come across the case in which fraudsters give calls to senior citizens and phish their bank details. This crime only requires a phone number and name of the person to launch the attack. This is high time that people get aware of such frauds and demand for data protection,” added Raj.

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