Monday September 23, 2019
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Rs 4,263 crore railways freight scam disclosed by CBI

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Indian Railways freight

By NewsGram Staff  Writer

In countrywide surprise checks at 65 locations, CBI along with Indian Railways’ vigilance officers and digital forensic experts unraveled major irregularities in the weighment of freight carried in trains.

Freight earnings comprise of almost two-thirds of the revenue of Indian Railways. The transporters are worse affected by the said irregularities, which is also deteriorating the tracks on long routes where the freight wagons move.

The Times of India (TOI) reported that CBI is soon going to register multiple FIRs. The agency is also keeping a hawk eye on several senior officers of railways, private vendors and freight transporters. CBI smells that the ‘scam’ may have caused a great damage of Rs. 4,263 crore going by the statistics of 2012-13. In addition, they are also investigating under-reporting of weighment of last three financial years, reported TOI.

The four-day surprise checks, commenced on April 17, were carried out at more than 65 Electronic In-Motion Weigh Bridge (EIMWB) locations that included regions of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Punjab, Jharkhand, Assam, UP, West Bengal, Odisha, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, MP, Maharashtra, Goa, Rajasthan and Gujarat etc.

“Systematic under-weighment was found at many locations leading to the EIMWB recording a lower than actual weight. The quantum of under-weighment increased with an increase in speed of the rake,” found CBI during the investigations.

The agency also stated that the software of static and in-motion weigh bridges used by railways for weighment purposes are maneuvered.

A CBI officer said that, “The manipulation has been done through collusion amongst railway officials, private vendors and freight operators and is not only causing huge financial loss to the government exchequer but also corresponding gain to private freight operators/private persons and is damaging railway tracks, wagons, etc. and is adversely affecting railway safety.”

“The software was set in a way in EIMWBs that it will always show less weight in the wagon,” added the officer.

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WhatsApp Offering 1000GB Free Data on its Birthday a Scam

In reality, users ended up on sites that signed them up for premium and costly SMS services or installed third-party apps on their smartphones

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whatsapp, paytm, UPI-based Pay service
FILE - The WhatsApp app logo is seen on a smartphone in this picture illustration. VOA

Have you received a WhatsApp message offering 1000GB free Internet data? Beware, as it is a scam that is spreading fast.

Researchers from cybersecurity firm ESET have received a message on WhatsApp stating that the app was giving away 1000 GB of internet data to celebrate its 10th anniversary this year.

The fraudulent campaign is hosted by a domain that is home to yet more bogus offers pretending to come from other well-known brands.

“What strikes us right off the bat here is that the URL that comes with the message is not an official WhatsApp domain,” the researchers said in a blog post late Monday.

Even though businesses may sometimes run promotions through third parties, the rule of thumb here is to check on the company’s website to make sure any promotion is real and valid.

If you were to click on the link, you would be taken to a page that invites you to answer a series of questions in the form of a survey — ranging from how you found the offer to your opinion on the app.

“While you would be responding to the questionnaire, the site would invite you to pass along the offer to at least 30 more people in order to qualify for the big reward’. Needless to say, this is merely a way to boost the campaign’s reach,” said the researchers.

Conference, Privacy, Social Media
FILE – Silhouettes of mobile users are seen next to logos of social media apps Signal, Whatsapp and Telegram projected on a screen in this picture illustration. VOA

What are the fraudsters running this WhatsApp-themed scam looking to gain from it?

“Apparently their goal here is click fraud – a highly prevalent monetization scheme that relies on racking up bogus ad clicks that ultimately bring revenues for the operators of any given campaign,” warned ESET.

The same domain that hosts this scam is also home to many other offers, each pretending to come from a different company, including Adidas, Nestle and Rolex, to name but a few.

Also Read: Websites Using Facebook’s ‘Like’ Button Liable for Data: EU Court

In 2017, a similar WhatsApp-themed scam made the rounds that promised to unlock free Internet access.

In reality, users ended up on sites that signed them up for premium and costly SMS services or installed third-party apps on their smartphones.

“In 2018, perhaps the same fraudsters used ‘free Adidas shoes’ as the bait. Regardless of the tune, the end goal was invariably the same — give the scammers an easy way to line their pockets,” said the researchers. (IANS)