Bengaluru: Controversy marred the launch of Swiggy-Go, the instant service pick up and drop service for packages, in the city when conmen posing as the company’s customer care executives swiped off Rs 95,000 from a woman’s account after tricking her into revealing bank details, including her UPI PIN.
Aparna Thakkar Suri, a 47-year-old resident of Indiranagar, had decided to use Swiggy-Go services to pick up an old smartphone from her and deliver it to Mohammed Bilal who had purchased it from her on OLX. Bilal would have paid her online after receiving the phone.
According to a report in Deccan Herald, a delivery executive picked up the phone from the service station. However, Bilal called up Suri at 11pm to say he hadn’t received the phone yet. Suri was then informed that the delivery had been cancelled and that the phone was at the service station.
Media reports quoted a Swiggy spokesperson as saying that Suri had given an incomplete delivery address and placed the order using her son’s number. She had then reportedly switched out her son’s SIM card with her own. Since the order was placed using a different number, Swiggy records showed no order on her current number.
It was then that Suri decided to contact Swiggy-Go’s customer care and searched for a helpline number online. The number she found, however, was a fake helpline posted by conmen. The person at the other end asked Suri to place another order via a link he sent her online. The link asked Suri for her bank account details, including her UPI PIN. She obliged.
Suri realized her folly on receiving a message from her bank saying Rs 95,000 had been debited from her account. When she called again on the ‘helpline number’, there was no response.
She approached the Baiyappanahalli police, following which a case was registered under the IT Act.
Swiggy, meanwhile, said it had tried to approach the police but was told it cannot register a complaint since it was not the aggrieved party in the case,
"This brings to light another instance of an industry-wide issue of fraudsters publicizing themselves through fake customer care numbers of prominent brands on dubious websites/platforms created by them. On our part, Swiggy attempts to file complaints when such instances are brought to our notice. We’d like to reiterate that at Swiggy, we never request our users to share their personal bank details and advise them to always connect to customer care through the Swiggy app or via email,” a Swiggy spokesperson said.
The food delivery platform had launched the pick-up and drop service in Bengaluru on September 4. According to the company, Swiggy Go can be used to pick up and drop off laundry, get forgotten keys, send lunch boxes from home to office or even deliver documents or parcels to clients.