Call centre that was ripping off Americans busted in Haryana’s Gurugram

Gurugram (IANS): The Haryana chief minister’s flying squad on Tuesday night busted an illegal call centre operating in Sector 28 in Gurugram situated near the Delhi-Haryana border.

The call centre mostly used to cheat US nationals on the pretext of resolving Social Security Number (SSN) verification and used to charge $100 to $500 as service charge from each client, the police said on Wednesday.

The accused had also paid Rs 250,000 [Rs 57 = $1 CAD/ Rs 73 = $1 USD] as house rent for two months.

While duping their clients, they used to introduce themselves as SSN department employees. According to the police, a team from the chief minister’s flying squad led by an Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) raided the call centre which was located at plot number 558, Sector 28, in Gurugram following a tip-off. During the raid, the police arrested two persons and seized seven hard disks along with other electronic gadgets.

The arrested persons have been identified as Anurag Tiwari and Kirti Kumar Keshav, residents of Jind district in Haryana. However, the owner of the fake call centre fled the spot. He is reportedly a resident of Ahmedabad.

The arrested men were co-partners in the fake call centre.

During the raid, the police came across four women and 22 men, including the arrested suspects, who were working at the fake call centre and were communicating with US nationals. However, after questioning the police released those who were working there.

“A complaint was received that this fake call centre had cheated several US nationals on the pretext of resolving SSN-related problems in Sector 28 area. The youths were employed at the call centre, which was being operated without a license issued by the Department of Telecommunications (DOT),” said the ACP.

“During questioning, the accused revealed that they used to communicate with US citizens to resolve SSN verification process. They used to charge nearly $100 to $500 per client as service charge via bank account,” he added.

“The matter is under investigation. How the accused were operating the fake call centre is being probed. The involvement of other people cannot be ruled out,” the officer said.

A First Information Report under the relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Information Technology Act has been registered at the cyber crime police station.