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Indian Trio accused of Hacking into a Businessman’s Mobile Banking App and stealing $2,72,249 (Dh 1 million) in Dubai

They forged his signature on the application form after pretending the original SIM card was lost

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Dubai, Dec 6, 2016: Three Indian men have been accused of hacking into a businessman’s mobile banking application and stealing $2,72,249 (Dh 1 million), local media reported.

The Indian trio — a 38-year-old worker, a 27-year-old visitor and a 26-year-old mechanic — aided and abetted other suspects at large in applying for a SIM card in the businessman’s name at a telecommunication service provider.

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They forged his signature on the application form after pretending the original SIM card was lost, reported Gulf News on Monday, without naming any of the accused.

According to the local media report, they used the replica SIM to hack into the businessman’s bank account through the mobile banking application and transferred a large amount of money from his account to another account.

The three suspects were not present at the Dubai Court of the first instance on Monday to face charges of forgery, online fraud and embezzlement.

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One of the bank staff told prosecutors that the businessman called in and complained that a large amount of money had been embezzled from his account.

“We checked and found that online smart banking had been activated through his mobile number which was registered with the bank. The money was then transferred from his account to another account and later withdrawn in cheques in the defendants’ names,” he said.

A police Lt. said: “Through investigation, we apprehended the first accused (a 38-year-old) who admitted he had a SIM card issued in the victim’s name with the help of a runaway accomplice.”

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The second man, 26, was arrested while trying to encash a cheque at the bank’s branch. He confessed during interrogation that the same runaway suspect had given him several bank cards and their pin codes to withdraw cash.

The court will hand down a ruling on December 29. (IANS)

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Aadhaar Helpline Mystery: French Security Expert Tweets of doing a Full Disclosure Tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App

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Google’s admission that it had in 2014 inadvertently coded the 112 distress number and the UIDAI helpline number into its setup wizard for Android devices triggered another controversy on Saturday as India’s telecom regulator had only recommended the use of 112 as an emergency number in April 2015.

After a large section of smartphone users in India saw a toll-free helpline number of UIDAI saved in their phone-books by default, Google issued a statement, saying its “internal review revealed that in 2014, the then UIDAI helpline number and the 112 distress helpline number were inadvertently coded into the SetUp wizard of the Android release given to OEMs for use in India and has remained there since”.

Aadhaar Helpline Number Mystery: French security expert tweets of doing a full disclosure tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App, Image: Wikimedia Commons.

However, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recommended only in April 2015 that the number 112 be adopted as the single emergency number for the country.

According to Google, “since the numbers get listed on a user’s contact list, these get  transferred accordingly to the contacts on any new device”.

Google was yet to comment on the new development.

Meanwhile, French security expert that goes by the name of Elliot Alderson and has been at the core of the entire Aadhaar controversy, tweeted on Saturday: “I just found something interesting. I will probably do full disclosure tomorrow”.

“I’m digging into the code of the @Google SetupWizard app and I found that”.

“As far as I can see this object is not used in the current code, so there is no implications. This is just a poor coding practice in term of security,” he further tweeted.

On Friday, both the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) as well as the telecom operators washed their hand of the issue.

While the telecom industry denied any role in the strange incident, the UIDAI said that he strange incident, the UIDAI said that some vested interests were trying to create “unwarranted confusion” in the public and clarified that it had not asked any manufacturer or telecom service provider to provide any such facility.

Twitter was abuzz with the new development after a huge uproar due to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman R.S. Sharma’s open Aadhaar challenge to critics and hackers.

Ethical hackers exposed at least 14 personal details of the TRAI Chairman, including mobile numbers, home address, date of birth, PAN number and voter ID among others. (IANS)

Also Read: Why India Is Still Nowhere Near Securing Its Citizens’ Data?