Pune ‘BPO’ which cheated Microsoft’s clients in US busted
The cyber cell of the Pune police have arrested three youths who ran an illegal business process outsourcing (BPO) unit in Bavdhan. The police suspect the unregistered BPO may have cheated hundreds of US nationals by claiming to be representing software giant Microsoft.
The youths -Aditya Rathi (25) of Bavdhan, Ritesh Nawani (29) and Harish Khushlani (26), both from Pimpri -had managed to gain access to the names, phone numbers and addresses of 10 lakh Microsoft customers in the US. The BPO had 11 staff members, who would communicate with these customers by claiming to be Microsoft support engineers speaking from Arizona in the US.
The BPO had routed its calls to the US customers by using VOIP software which used to show that the callers were from Arizona. “The callers would convince the customers that a virus had attacked and slowed down their computers and that they could fix the problem online. The BPO would charge US $300 per computer. However, the staff would only clear the trash bin and cookies on the computers, which would marginally increase the speed. The clients were told to pay with their credit cards. The total amount that the BPO illegally received is yet to be calculated. Our team has seized the hardware for analysis,” police inspector Sunil Pawar said.
Of the three youths, only Rathi had studied computer applications till the second year of his course from a college on Paud road. Khushlani is a commerce graduate while Nawani had failed in his SSC exams. The 11employees of the BPO are school or college dropouts. Rathi had taken huge loans from different banks to start the BPO.
Continued on Page 5 A team led by deputy commissioner of police (cyber, economics) Dipak Sakore, assistant police commissioner (cyber) Kishor Naik and police inspectors Pawar and Milind Gaikwad arrested the youths.The team raided the BPO in the early hours of Saturday after receiving a tip-off. The BPO has been operating for the last one year. Assistant police inspector Sanjay Thenge lodged a complaint against the youths with the Hinjewadi police.
Pawar said the BPO staff would gain control of the US computers using the Teamviewer software online. They would also access bank details and other information of the customers.
Pawar said that after dropping out of college, Rathi worked with three different BPOs. His parents run a big business in Sangli.
The suspects have been arrested under section 416 (cheating by impersonation), 417 (punishment for cheating), 419 (punishment for cheating by impersonation), and 420 (cheating) of the Indian Penal Code.Sections 66, 66(C) and 66(D) of the IT Act has also been in voked against them