Don''t fall prey to bogus prize money offers: RBI warns public

New Delhi, Feb 15 (PTI) The Reserve Bank today warned thepublic to not fall prey to fictitious offers of large prizemoney through e-mails, letters and other electronic modes ofcommunications on payment of service charges.

"Such offers (of large prize money from abroad) arefraudulent and...the public should immediately register acomplaint with the local police/cyber crime authorities whenthey receive such offers or become a victim of any suchfraud", the central bank said in a release.

The RBI''s advisory comes soon after the Finance Ministryissued a similar public notice cautioning the public againstsuch bogus offers of huge prize money.

The central bank further said that people should not makeany payments towards schemes from unknown entities as "suchremittances are illegal and any resident in India collectingand effecting/remitting such payments directly/indirectlyoutside India is liable to be proceeded against forcontravention of the FEMA Act, 1999."

The central bank, it added, will not be responsible forrecovering moneys remitted in response to such boguscommunications.

RBI has also urged the Indian Banks� Association andbanks to educate their customers to remain vigilant and to notrespond to fictitious offers.

"Banks have also been advised to take up with lawenforcing agencies whenever accounts of their customers aremisused for such fraudulent activities," it added.

Elaborating on the modus operandi of such fraudsters, itsaid such offers comes through letters, e-mails, mobilephones, SMSs etc.

"The offers are apparently signed by topexecutives/senior officials of such authorities. However, onlythe names of the officials may be correct but their signaturesare faked," it added. RSN CS

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