Yes, another year full of technological advancement has started, yet another year full of scams has started! Hackers are always there to make your life hell, literally. So what is new with the hackers? Well, they have yet again targeted WhatsApp to spread a new rumor. As per the claims, PM Narender Modi is offering Rs.500 recharge for free. We Indians have some obsession with the word “free”. If there is something free, we will not even think twice before using the app, website or forward a message just to try our luck. The hackers know it very well, and they often take advantage of the situation.
What exactly is going on?
So the deal is, a link http://balance.modi-gov.in is getting circulated from last few days over WhatsApp. It claims that the Government of India is offering Rs.500/- free recharge for every Indian to promote mobile connectivity. All you have to do is fill up a form. Give your name, phone number, region and operator. Once you press the recharge button, it will take you to another page urging you to share the message with 15 people to complete the transaction and get free recharge worth Rs.500/-. It looks legit but it not and there are several questions which arise when you look closely at the website.
Points that raise the alarm
- The Whois information for the website is incomplete.
- The number and email ID in the whois information does not provide any info in Google search.
- The government of India will never post messages over WhatsApp. The official announcement comes from the proper Moreover, if there is a scheme from Mr.Narendra Modi, he will definitely announce it on his Twitter account.
- The website does not have any contact us page.
- The SSL certificate is missing from the website.
- The website states that they are not associated with any telecom company.
- The website is active from last one month and still there is no user rating or any information available over the internet.
- The scroll of the “successful” recharges does not change even after 1-2 hours which is fishy.
The number of internet users is increasing on a daily basis in India, and unfortunately, we do not have a solid plan to guide people about such scams. Even after running for more than 20 days, there is still no word from the Government of India or any action taken against the owner of the website which is even more worrying.
The GoI is pushing India towards a digital age. It is very important to have proper education related to cyber crimes, internet ethics and “what to avoid” over the internet. It is true that the World Wide Web opens new doors for every single person using it. From education to business, the internet offers a lot to the users. Still, if you are not careful, it can be a financial or emotional disaster. It is always better to avoid such messages over internet or WhatsApp, and if you get any such message, it will be better just to delete it.