Fraud Alert 2022 : Facebook Friendship Frauds ,Custom Frauds and Matrimonial Scams in India

Platforms used for Custom Frauds or Online Scams.

Facebook, Instagram, and Whatsapp are common places where we spend most of our time. These are all social networking platforms that connect us to the world. Sometimes we found our life partners, and friends, forever on such social media platforms but for now, time is just changing. 

Scammers/fraudsters using this Social networking platform cheat money from people. In today's time, your Facebook best friend or your life partner on Instagram might be posing as a pilot, engineer, or doctor he/she is nothing just a cheater.  Yes"This article is about such online fraud cases I am covering for the last 2 months" and in such custom fraud scams, most of the time victims are the girls. 

Custom Frauds In India

List of social media platforms used by scammers for doing custom frauds. 

  1. Facebook 
  2. WhatsApp 
  3. Instagram
  4. twitter 
  5. LinkedIn 
  6. telegram 
  7. Gmail
  8. Matrimonial websites.

Different types of scams on the platforms mentioned above.  

  1. Gift Custom Duty
  2. Money Conversation charge in India
  3. International Monetary fund certificate. 
  4. Lottery amount
  5. USA Solider sending money
  6. Immigration fees. 
  7. Invest in Digital Currency (separate article will be available soon) etc 

Why is an article required on custom frauds? 

Well, I am covering online financial frauds in India for the last 6 months and continuously reporting these scams to the cybercrime Police. suddenly, many of my viewers on youtube started contacting me about custom frauds. When I started investigating this scam, I found it is well-organized fraud on social media and most of the time victims are married women.  I talked to more than 2000 males and females who are the victims of such scams. You might be surprised to know that the maximum amount paid by the victim is rs 2 million and the minimum amount is Rs 35 thousand. 

This is just not about the money, many of the victims' lives have a huge negative impact by such scams. some girls shared their private pictures with the scammers and some of them are just working to pay the loan EMI. as many girls and boys took loans from banks or borrow money from friends to pay the customs charges.

How do Customs money fraud scams work in India?

Have you received a friend request on Facebook or a message request on Instagram/Whatsapp from a person who looks like a millionaire, a pilot, or maybe a doctor, or businessman? Then, this is the time for you to be alert and careful while sharing any information with them.

Scam from starting 

In the beginning, these scammers become your best friends on social media, they always talk about you. so that you can trust them.  they can contact you anywhere through Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, Twitter even matrimonial websites. 

Most of the time these scammers try to target married women from semi-urban areas. the scammers pretend to be young and reach the boy, especially someone whom you can trust for your life.  unmarried men are also the target of such scams. but here the question is why married women are the target of such scams ???? if you look from a scammer's point of view, they choose a target who can not go to the police station and can not share details about the scam with anyone in his/her family. Of married women, 99% will not share details about such scams with their husbands or anyone in the family, as they believe it might have negative consequences (fear of divorce, lifetime family pressure, or something else which I can not imagine ). 

Sometimes, these scammers create profiles on matrimonial websites, and pose as a successful person who is an NRI and target Indian women. we might be surprised once again to know that this profile also has a verification tik on the matrimonial website. 

once you start trusting him that he/she is a reach person can easily effort anything, from here the scam started, and here you are in the trap. Because of the strong trust of the victim scammer esliy make the victim believe that he wants to send many expansive gifts to India for the victim. 

Middle of the scam

after building a strong trust with the victim and after convincing him that he/she is a well-settled person and can afford to 3 to 4 million rs gift in India. The scammer will say something like that "I got a promotion or tomorrow is my birthday" and I want to send you some gifts in India. he/she claims that they have sent a "gift" through a fast courier company. To make you believe the scammer will also send you some pictures of gifts and packages please watch the video below for more details.

"Gift" stuck at custom

This is the stage where most people trust the scammer and give their all hard-earned money to the scammer.  a few days later, the victim will receive a call from an Indian number. Otherside of the phone fraudster pretend or claim that he/she is calling from the custom department (most of the time they said Delhi customs office) or a courier company. 

Most of the time scammer said you have to pay customs duty which is Rs 35000. and most of the time victim paid this amount to the scammer.

once you paid import duty, which is in reality not imposed on gifts but you know it is a scam so they can say anything. they will say this line to you "we found a bag inside the parcel which contains a large amount of foreign currency for that your need to pay customs charges".

Paying RBI Conversation charges or charges for free the gift. 

Most of the time, I found in my investigation people paid such a conversation amount on the name of RBI, In real "RBI Conversation charges"the term used by the scammer also not existed. But people paid this amount as scammers threatened them using the name of govt organizations and police arrest.

Scammers always ask 4 to 5% fees of the total amount found in the bag, suppose they found 5 lakh the conversation charge would be 2.5 lakh rs. 
Note: In real this all does not happen. 

Note: they always ask you to transfer the money in a private bank account, using any payment method sometimes scammers also offer to pay through Bitcoin, and govt of India did not deal in digital currency. 

What if you paid all the amount?

Once you paid in this scam your money refund would be subject to a police investigation. most of the time, people lost everything. 
once you paid to the scammer in the name of the customs department they will ask you, again and again, using fake terminology, which in reality doesn't matter to an individual. 

Scammers also create a fake website for live gift tracking, Please don't trust such a website. These websites are also part of scams.  

Fake website for custom frauds.

Want to know more about the frauds website, watch the video below

How to detect a scammer?

  • First thing first, don't trust everything you saw on the internet. most peoples are fake social networking sites. 
  • When a completely random person tries to connect with you through social networking platform, cross-verify his profile again. He/she might be using someone else picture to do a scam with you. if you have doubts then do a video call for 3 to 5 minutes and don't forget to check his words and lips movement. 
  • Do the google reverse image search, if you have any doubt regarding this watch digital sudhir youtube videos. By doing this you might get some other images of the person, retargeting his profile. 
  • if you ask him for a gift tracking ID, he/she can easily share it with you. It is an online talk 1 hour to create a courier company website.  so don't trust on tracking id as well. 

if you received a call from the customs department?

  1. first or foremost, you are not gonna receive calls or emails from the customs department for paying any random amount. 
  2. if the customs department wants to contact you regarding your parcel or package being imported from a foreign,  they will send you an official letter for documentation via govt post. 

Can you send money abroad in a courier package?

Once someone said that "he/she sends you money" by post then be careful it is a scam. As per govt law, "it is completely illegal to send currency notes and coins by mail or courier service".

Courier companies such as DTD, HDL, and FedEx if they found or traced that this package includes cash, they never allow to transfer of the package and always ask the sender to remove the cash from the package. 

Anyone living in a foreign or a foreign national can send you money through an online medium such as Paypal, Wetransfer, banking, etc. 

the authorities in the Custom departmentsaid, "General Public is alerted/advised not to pay any amount in the name of customs to any person or to any private account or to anybody who demands such payments claiming to be an officer of customs on the parcels alleged to be detained by Customs at Delhi Airport/Import/Export Shed/FPO."For any query or verification following Customs Officers can be contacted: "Deputy/Asstt. Commissioner of Customs, Foreign Post Office, Phone: 011-23238917. Deputy/ Asstt. Commissioner of Customs, NCT, New Delhi, Phone: 011-47019839/40571151. Deputy/Asstt. Commissioner of Customs (Admn), Phone: 011-25654290. Superintendent of Customs (Hqr), Phone - 011-25655150," the notice reads.

This all was the custom frauds, they can changes the platform from  Facebook to insta but the method would be the same. In the next article, you will learn how to file a complaint if something like this happened to you. 

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