Here's how a guy from Gurugram used pop-up ads and a call centre to defraud unsuspecting Americans for up to $3 million
- The 29-year-old Indian national,
Sahil Narang, will also have to complete three years of supervised release.
- The investigation into Narang’s fraud states that his scheme was successful 30% of the time.
- Narang and others made over 70 calls per day, and tried to defraud up to $3 million from unsuspecting computer users.
AdvertisementA 29-year-old Indian national has been sentenced to three years in a US federal prison on charges of call centre fraud. The verdict comes a few months after the accused pleaded guilty of conspiracy and fraud.
Sahil Narang, a resident of Gurgaon, was in the US illegally when he was arrested in May 2019. He has been described as a ‘key participant’ in tech fraud and refund fraud – usually targeted at technologically unsophisticated computer users, who are often senior citizens.
According to acting United States attorney Richard B Myrus, Narang has been sentenced to three years in prison, which will be followed by three years of supervised release.
The facts of the case put forward by the US federal prosecutors state that internet pop-up advertisements were used to fool computer users into believing that their computers were affected by malware.
These advertisements would make the users believe that they needed computer protection services. A number would be displayed, and when dialed, the users would be routed to call centres run by Narang.
Further, these call centre operators would call the affected users to tell them they could get a refund of the amount paid. They would then say a refund has been processed to the user. To double dip, these operators would call the users again to tell them they had refunded an excess amount, and that these users would have to repay the difference.
To make it seem believable, these operators would display fake bank balances on the computer screens of these users.
These users would then be asked to ‘refund’ the excess money they were told they had received – essentially, the users would end up paying the fraudsters twice.
Narang’s fraud scheme had a success rate of 30%
According to the federal prosecutors and a nine-month investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (
AdvertisementNarang and others made over 70 calls per day during the investigation period, with 30% of those calls ending up in successful frauds.
They put the estimate of fraud between $1.5 to $3 million.
With inputs from PTI.
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