Six Ways To Protect Yourself From Fraud On UPI Apps Like Google Pay, PhonePe
New Delhi: Are you someone who regularly uses UPI payment apps like GPay, Paytm, PhonePe? As much as these tools bring convenience to our transaction model, they have certain advantages and disadvantages that we should be aware of.
The UPI allows bank account holders (of banks participating in the UPI) to send and receive money using a virtual payment address (VPA), a unique identifier, without the need additional banking information. Scammers tend to ask for the Virtual Payment Address (VPA) during a phone call or while engaging in a conversation.
Therefore, while such apps, users should be aware of UPI payment security tips and tricks to avoid falling prey to cyber scams. Some simple steps include not clicking on random links, answering scam calls, giving essential transaction details like PIN, password, etc.
Here are some tips and tricks you should follow to protect yourself from UPI transaction fraud:
Do not share your PIN code
The first in the list is – never share your PIN code. Whether it’s a friend, family member, or even someone you trust, sharing a PIN with anyone makes you vulnerable to fraud. If your PIN code has been revealed, change it immediately.
Be attentive to transfer requests on UPI
Fraudsters take advantage of the ‘request money’ option on UPI applications such as Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM), Google Pay, PhonePe, etc. Impostors show an interest in purchasing a product advertised on various online platforms and engage with the seller over a phone call. They force the seller of the product to transfer the money using the ‘request money’ option of the UPI apps. There have been numerous cases of such frauds in the past two months.
Use a strong password
Lock your phone and payment apps with a strong password. Usually, most people use simple passwords like your name, date of birth, cell phone number, etc. – this should be avoided. Make it a combination of letters, numbers and characters to strengthen your password.
Keep your transaction mode simple
Try to use only one of the payment apps and that too a reliable and verified payment app. Using multiple applications increases the risk of fraud.
Update the UPI app regularly
Every app needs updating and every update brings better features and benefits. You should always update the UPI payment app to the latest version.
Counterfeit UPI apps galore
There are counterfeits for some of the UPI apps on the Google Play and Apple app stores. For example, after the launch of BHIM in December 2016, complaints were made to NPCI regarding many duplicate BHIM apps available on the Google Play Store. Some of the names with which the fake apps were listed on Google Play Store were Modi Bhim, Bhim Modi App, BHIM Payment-UPI Guide, BHIM Banking guide, Modi ka Bhim, etc. However, after receiving complaints in January 2017 from consumers, these bogus apps were removed from the Google Play Store.