Online scams and frauds are on the rise. It is important that you protect your online credentials and ensure that you do not fall victim to online frauds. This article educates you about the typical modus operandi of fraudsters who try to exploit online shopping customers by committing financial fraud or stealing personal information. Issued in public interest by Flipkart
Have you recently received an email, call, SMS, WhatsApp or Telegram message, or any other social media message claiming to provide unbelievable discounts and offers from Flipkart? Look again, and make sure that the message is authentic. Such messages are not sent by official Flipkart channels, but by fraudsters and scammers who intend to deceive you. If you are not careful, you may end up becoming a victim of fraud, and you may lose both your money and your personal data. Fraudsters intend to make a fast buck by misappropriating the familiar and trustworthy name of Flipkart. You are advised not to trust these fraudulent individuals or agencies with your money, or with your personal and financial information. Always check with authentic and original Flipkart sources first.
Read this helpful article to know how to stay safe while shopping online.
So, what should you do if you come across a suspicious promotional message, which you think is fraudulent? Without hesitation, please report it immediately by reaching out to the Flipkart Customer Support toll free number 1800 208 9898. Please help the Flipkart customer care representative with as many details as possible, as this will enable us to investigate the issue deeply and protect other customers like you.
This article informs and educates you about how you can shop safe on Flipkart and still get the best deals without falling prey to scammers and frauds. Read more to understand how you can prevent and report potential frauds.
Beware of Online fraud – learn how to protect your Flipkart account
Follow these security tips to keep your Flipkart account safe: Your Flipkart customer account contains sensitive personal information like your name, address, phone numbers, email ID, etc. Your Flipkart account is also linked to additional features like Flipkart Supercoins, Flipkart PayLater, and Electronic Gift Vouchers. If a fraudster gains access to your account, this information also stands the risk of being compromised.
While Flipkart has put in place stringent measures to ensure your account credentials remain safe and secure, it is equally your responsibility to ensure that you take precautions to keep your account safe from fraudsters. In some cases, fraudsters may get hold of email addresses, usernames and passwords that you may have used to access other websites. If these details are the same as your Flipkart account details, it becomes easier for miscreants to gain access to your account.
Always set a unique password for your Flipkart account, one that is not used on any other sites. You can set a strong password using a combination of capital letters, lowercase letters, numerals and special characters. Set a reminder to change your password at regular intervals. While doing so, remember not to reuse any recent passwords. If you happen to forget your Flipkart account password, there’s no need to worry. You can reset it using the ‘Forgot Password’ option on the Flipkart desktop website or mobile app. A One-Time-Password (OTP) will be sent to your registered mobile number.
Learn more about how to secure your Flipkart account.
Here are some ways in which fraudsters may get in touch with you:
Fake websites: Fake websites may appear similar to Flipkart. They may make illegal use of the Flipkart logo and artwork, or other trademarks such as The Big Billion Days logo. Additionally, these fraudulent websites may have names and internet addresses (URLs) using the word ‘flipkart’ in them, for example: flipkart.dhamaka-offers.com, flipkart-bigbillion-sale.com among others. Although such websites pretend to be associated with Flipkart by using similar-looking and similar-sounding names, they are not authorized by Flipkart.
To read more on how to spot a fake website, click here
— Flipkart Stories (@FlipkartStories) July 16, 2018
Fake messages on WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Telegram and/or other social messaging platforms: Fraudsters and cheats may use any of these familiar messaging platforms to send you messages with fake offers, discounts, fake contests, lucky draws, etc.
- Some Flipkart customers have reported receiving messages where they are asked to provide details such as name, mobile number, address, banking details, etc.
- Customers are asked to share the fraudulent messages with other individuals or groups with a promise to win lucrative prizes like a car or motorcycle, or any other item
- Recipients are offered products at unbelievable prices (e.g. a 32 GB pen-drive for ₹25)
- On clicking the embedded links, you may be lured to a website that appears to be very similar to Flipkart (see the above section on fake websites)
- You may be asked to make payments through online wallets, bank transfer, or other means for logistics or taxes to avail a ‘free gift’ or a ‘prize’
- Some fraudsters may post fake messages containing ‘Flipkart Customer Care’ or ‘2GUD Customer Care’ phone numbers to mislead online shoppers. These numbers are likely to be posted in Facebook posts or comments, or direct messages on social media platforms like Twitter. Please note that the official Flipkart Customer Care number is 1800 208 9898. Read this article for more details.
What should you do when you receive fraudulent messages?
You are advised not to reply to these fraudulent messages. Please do not click on any links they contain without verifying their authenticity with Flipkart, no matter how attractive the offers may seem. Flipkart has no connection with these fraudulent senders, and we have no control over any information that you share with them. Any details that you share with these fraudulent senders that impersonate Flipkart can compromise your personal and financial information, and may put you at risk of further criminal activity. Payments once made to these accounts cannot be retrieved or reversed, and you may be cheated of your hard-earned money.
To read more about fake messages and emails, click here.
— Flipkart Stories (@FlipkartStories) July 18, 2018
Fake Calls or SMS to customers: Often, customers may receive calls from unknown numbers. The callers may speak English, Hindi or any other language. They may lure you with information that you have won ‘free gifts’ or that your mobile number has been selected through a ‘lucky draw’, etc.
This is how such criminals operate:
- In order to avail these gifts, you will be asked to reveal sensitive personal or financial information or credentials such your bank account numbers, electronic wallet details, credit/debit card information, CVV, PIN or OTP.
- They may also lure you to a website that appears similar to Flipkart or send you a fake/ fabricated certificate.
- They may claim to be Flipkart employees, or partners of Flipkart, and may display fake identity cards as proof. It is easy to fabricate such documents in order to make you believe that they are genuine.
- You may also be asked to transfer money to certain digital wallets to claim prizes or gifts. Note that these accounts are not managed by Flipkart, but by fraudsters who want to cheat you.
— Flipkart Stories (@FlipkartStories) July 19, 2018
Phishing (Fake Emails): ‘Phishing’ is a fraudulent attempt to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details for malicious reasons by disguising as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication. Phishing emails are sent by fraudsters. The emails may ask you to visit malicious links through which your personal and/or financial information can be obtained and be used without your consent to carry out fraudulent transactions.
You may lose money, as well as personal and sensitive information. Your systems such as desktop computers, laptops or mobile phones can get infected or compromised by malware/viruses upon opening or clicking on the links in such emails.
Fake online games/websites (discount coupons/gift vouchers/offers/online games): Online scams of this type reach out to customers, asking them to play games such as ‘spin the wheel,’ which promise free gifts, cash prizes, and other tempting bait. The players are often asked to share the game with their contacts to be able to avail the prize, which, of course, never materializes. Users are made to part with sensitive personal information such as their email id, address and mobile phone number. By participating, you are at risk of fraud. Please read this article on fake online games for more information.
Offline frauds – important information that you should know
Now that you are aware of how online frauds work, here’s what you should also know about frauds that are perpetrated outside of the internet and mobile world.
Fake offers from fraudulent Marketplace Sellers: Sometimes, when you take delivery of an order you placed on Flipkart, you may receive a pamphlet or an insert, which asks you to make future purchases on some other online shopping site or portal to avail higher discounts. Similarly, certain callers who identify themselves as Flipkart sellers may ask you to place orders directly with them, bypassing the approved payment methods on the Flipkart site. They may ask for payment to be made directly to them through other channels. Often, they may call you and ask you to cancel your Flipkart order. Once you agree to any such deals with these fraudulent sellers, Flipkart will not have any control over any information you might share with them. You are at risk of fraud if you accept such offers.
Letters and scratch cards received by post or courier
Our security team has observed that certain scamsters may send letters and scratch cards over post and courier. The letter typically declares that you have won a high-value prize like a car or motorcycle. You will be asked to call a phone number mentioned in the letter, or directed to a fake website that appears similar to Flipkart.com. Through these fraudulent means, scammers intend to cheat you of your money by getting access to your financial details or personal information. Please note that such offers and codes are invalid and cannot be applied on the official Flipkart website, m-site or app. Further, Flipkart does not ask you to provide money towards expenses such as registration, tax, etc. if you play and win games on the official Flipkart app, m-site or website.
Fake Job Offers
Such scams may involve offers of employment against certain commissions/fees, and may appear especially in newspaper advertisements and job portals. Flipkart never solicits, nor has it authorized any third party, to collect money from potential candidates for employment or contracts (for more information, read this post on Fake Flipkart job offers).
Fake Flipkart Franchises
In this type of scam, the fraudsters typically lure public to set up delivery hubs, etc. in the space available with you for a very lucrative rent. However, they demand certain fees/commission to take this further. They may also set up fake websites where you are asked to register your business. Please note that Flipkart does not demand any kind of fees or commission for setting up a franchise. If you come across any requests for such payments, you may be dealing with a fraudster. Please report such people or agencies at once.
Other methods used by frauds and cheats
The Flipkart security team has observed certain other fraud patterns in which customers may receive fraudulent SMS or WhatsApp messages or calls from fraudsters. Fraudsters may mislead customers by pretending to represent Flipkart or its group companies like Myntra, Jabong, Jeeves or PhonePe. A fraudster may quote your recent order numbers (which may be obtained from discarded packaging brands or covers) and ask customers to pay upfront charges through bank transfer/wallets, etc. They may also ask you to share your bank details, debit/credit card details (including card number, CVV and PIN) and/or certain personal details like Aadhaar or PAN card details. In a few instances, you may be asked to install third-party applications like AnyDesk. The Reserve Bank of India had issued a cautionary alert about the dangers of installing Anydesk.
Such software programs can take control of your mobile phone and access personal information as well as stored financial information. Please be assured that Flipkart or its authorized representatives will never ask you for these details. Neither will you be asked to install any third-party applications.
In case you receive any such calls or messages, disconnect immediately. Do not share any information with the callers. Please bring such matters to our attention as soon as possible by contacting our customer care number (1800 208 9898) or by sending a direct message (DM) on Twitter to Flipkart Support (@flipkartsupport). Please share details like the fraudsters’ phone numbers, or screenshots of suspicious messages received with our helpful customer care representatives.
How to shop safe on Flipkart and avoid risk of fraud
Flipkart customers can shop only on the official desktop website of Flipkart, Flipkart mobile shopping app (iOS and Android), and Flipkart mobile site. You cannot conduct online shopping on Flipkart through any other website or online platform other than these.
Flipkart has not authorized any third-party sites to represent it or its group companies (the Flipkart Group includes Myntra, Jabong, PhonePe, Jeeves, F1 Infosystems and 2GUD.com) to offer discounts or deals on its behalf. If you part with your personal/financial information or monies despite our cautionary advice, please understand that you are doing so at your own risk.
Where can I get reliable information about offers, deals and discounts on Flipkart?
That’s a good question. Of course, we know you want to make the most of deals, discounts and offers, but you must ensure that they are legitimate in the first place. Please visit https://www.flipkart.com/ and https://stories.flipkart.com for the latest news and announcements regarding all authorized offers, sales and discounts. These are the most accurate and reliable sources of information. Even if you read about Flipkart offers on reputable news websites or social media pages, please verify the information by visiting the official and authorized Flipkart channels before you do your shopping.
Enable notifications on your Flipkart mobile shopping app and ensure that you update the app to the latest version.
Please visit these online resources for the latest information about Flipkart:
– Official Facebook page for Flipkart
– Official Facebook page for Flipkart Stories
– Official Twitter account of Flipkart
– Official Twitter account of Flipkart Stories
Flipkart or its authorized representatives will never ask you to disclose your confidential information such as passwords, OTP and PIN numbers. By disclosing such information to unauthorized persons, you are at risk of being a victim of financial fraud and unlawful collection of personal information. You may even be lured into conducting fake online transactions or fraudsters may use your banking credentials to carry out frauds on our platform.
In case you have encountered financial loss due to any such frauds, you may reach out to us to immediately by calling the Flipkart Customer Support toll free number 1800 208 9898. We will try to cancel the order and process the refund back to source, wherever it is feasible and within control of Flipkart. In other cases, you will have to reach out to your banks and respective cybercrime police stations to lodge an official complaint. We will not share any details of suspected buyers with you directly. It will be shared only with law enforcement agencies on a case-to-case basis.
Your support can help protect customers like yourself, and the general public, from frauds. Report any suspicious activities to the Flipkart Customer Support toll free number 1800 208 9898. You can also send us an email or chat with us from within the Flipkart app (see screenshot):
Flipkart takes information security seriously and initiates necessary actions on a continual basis. In the past we have investigated cases and have taken legal action against fraudsters, scammers and imposters, while continuing to strengthen our systems and processes. Please help us in our endeavor to enhance customer data security for online shopping in India.
Read more customer education articles in our Safe Shopping section