Bengaluru, June 28: In a case of cyber fraud, a freelance software developer was duped of Rs 30 lakh by online scammers when he was looking for escort services. But the escort portal has shaved off his earnings one click at a time, costing him Rs 30 lakh in total.

The victim, Rao, a freelance software developer living alone in an apartment in Kodichikkanahalli, near Bommanahalli, clicked on an unwanted message that resulted in tens of payments in pursuit of escorts for weeks. He has not received any service weeks after clicking on the first link. However, the escort portal has slashed his profits one click at a time, costing him a total of Rs 30 lakh.

This is not the first time he has been tricked by cybercriminals. He had lost over Rs 4 lakh in the last week of December 2019 to a similar fraud. Online Fraud in Pune: Several Investors Duped of Rs 12 Crore by Fraudsters Via Fake Poultry Firm Website, YouTube Channel

Rao told police that he was searching for an escort service online, found a link on April 8 and registered his name and credentials on the portal. He received a call from a woman, who confirmed his registration. Later, he received a call from another woman, who asked him to pay Rs 840 to avail the service. He transferred Rs 840 and later lost Rs 16 lakh within three days. The miscreants asked him to transfer money for various reasons, including hotel room rent. Online Fraud in Pune: Senior Citizen Duped of Rs 5.9 Lakh on Pretext of Updating KYC

Rao again received a call from a woman and this time, she asked him to transfer Rs 499 to book the escort service. He ended up transferring Rs 14 lakh in multiple transactions. He stopped transferring money after the amount touched Rs 30 lakh.

Rao approached southeast CEN crime police on Saturday and filed his complaint. Police recalled that he had filed a similar case in Bommanahalli on January 24, 2020. Bommanahalli police had directed him to southeast CEN crime police over that and the cops had frozen part of Rao's money from the fraudster's bank account.

"Rao is a repeat victim. He should have been careful, given he had lost money to miscreants earlier. His carelessness led him to lose money again," said a police officer.

The first time, he had registered his name with a similar escort service portal by paying Rs 2,000. Later, two women identifying themselves as Shreya Sharma and Nisha Gupta called him and asked him to transfer money for booking a hotel room and other expenses. He transferred Rs 4,18,900 in multiple transactions.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jun 28, 2022 04:46 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website