Consume With Caution


Consume With Caution

Swapnil Bharali | November 16, 2019 16:09 hrs

Consumerism is at its peak in Guwahati it seems. And a whole lot of consumerist activities are being done over internet – as is the way of life these days.

Unfortunately, it has become quite clear that a fair bit of such consumer transactions are fraught with risks and remaining gullible or ignorant about the pitfalls in such transactions is not an option for a consumer any more.

Take the recent cases of a spurt in cyber crimes where gullible consumers have been defrauded of amounts in thousands siphoned straight out of their bank accounts when they tried to order food through the various food delivery apps or book a table at a city café or restaurant online. It seems, the loopholes in the existing transaction systems have been neatly identified by professional cyber criminals. The G Plus digital desk has been carrying some discomforting pieces of news of several citizens being defrauded off money nicked straight from their bank accounts and the police are quite clearly at sea while even trying to get a grasp of the situation leave alone solving the crimes. 

Most of these fraudulent activities seem to be related to the food industry. Citizens have been defrauded while ordering food online or while trying to book tables through the information provided by Google. Calls on phone numbers, as they appear or are listed on a Google search for a particular restaurant, reach some undesirable location even as the caller has no reason to suspect that something is amiss. There is a total breach of trust as the gullible caller shares his or her private information (in many cases it has been their Google Pay UPI number) and no one’s the wiser as within moments, his or her respective bank account is wiped clean through some neat internet banking transactions. In the process of reporting the news, the restaurant or the food delivery app’s name is often mentioned and this leads to an unnecessary misunderstanding by the reader leaving the restaurant or the delivery app’s name being sullied without any fault of theirs.

The police needs to gear up about this issue and so does the consuming public. People need to be smarter and not be as gullible as it appears to be. The flipside of the ease and comfort of internet transactions is clearly not very savoury and people need to be alert.

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