15,000 Indians lose over Rs 700 crore in Chinese scam involving Google reviews, liking YouTube videos

  • A massive online scam was busted in India where people lost over Rs 700 crore in less than a year. 
  • The scam involved luring people into doing tasks like writing Google reviews and liking YouTube videos.
  • Around 15,000 Indians were reportedly duped in this scam. 

In what could be one of the biggest online scams in India this year, around 15,000 Indians were caught in a scam involving Chinese handlers where they collectively lost over Rs 700 crore in less than a year. Reportedly, victims were asked to do small jobs like write Google reviews and like YouTube videos and enticed with monetary benefits.

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Hyderabad online scam

This scam took place in Hyderabad where the local crime branch started investigating after one person complained that he had been duped of Rs 28 lakh, according to a report by NDTV. Once the investigation started, the Hyderabad Police found that there were a lot more people scammed into this online fraud business. 

People were lured into part-time jobs while also getting the chance to invest their money, and grow it. The tasks were very simple, and it included liking YouTube videos or writing Google reviews. These people were getting paid for doing these meagre tasks, after which they were asked to start investing money for high returns. 

How the scam took place

The scam obviously started out good with people earning high returns, which made them invest more. The investments began with Rs 5,000 with returns as high as even double the amount. The scammers then asked these people to invest larger amounts that went up to lakhs of rupees. The catch here though was that these people weren’t allowed to withdraw the money until they completed all the tasks. There was even a fake window that showed returns of money invested by these people. 

The initial investigation found that there were 48 bank accounts opened up as shell companies, and a total of Rs 584 crore was scammed. It was later discovered that people were duped of another Rs 128 crore was, and 113 bank accounts were used in this scam.

The scammed money reached China through Dubai by skimming through multiple accounts, and later converted into cryptocurrency. The Hyderabad Police found that some of the money was even routed an account of Hezbollah, the Lebanon-based terror group. A total of nine people have been arrested so far with four from Hyderabad, three from Mumbai, and two from Ahmedabad. There are six more people yet to be captured by the police.