SBI card holders lose Rs 1.26 cr in Canada transactions

Over 100 debit card holders of State Bank of India have been duped of over Rs 1.26 crore in unauthorised transactions allegedly made in Canada. The complainants received transaction SMS from the bank, but claim that they did not visit Canada, police said on Saturday.

The details of the transactions show that the cards are of the same series issued in arrangement with MasterCard. According to police, the bank approached Canadian Police, but they asked the bank to first approach local police. 

The bank has now complained with Delhi Police after which a case was filed. “On June 22, various branches began receiving information and complaints relating to various unauthorised transaction of debit cards from customers in relation to SBI Gold Debit cards with series beginning with 511878,” the bank stated in the complaint. 

The customers complained that they were receiving SMS regarding transactions in their account taking place in Canada for substantial amounts. Taking immediate action, the bank’s corporate centre in Mumbai approached their branch in Toronto.Sources said that the Toronto branch approached Canadian police on July 22.
 “However, the Canadian authorities responded that the bank should inform local police and that local police could seek their assistance,” the source added.

The bank has pegged the discovered defrauded amount at Rs 1.26 crore, and admit that the amount could increase until the culprits are arrested. As a measure of caution, the bank has stopped international operation of the series of the debit cards.“However, the extent of fraud is yet to be discovered. It appears these debit cards numbering about 104 of series 511878 issued at different locations have been cloned and fabricated without the authority of the bank,” the bank added.

A case under Information Technology Act has been filed over the complaint. The debit cards were issued after compliance with Reserve Bank of India guidelines and Know Your Customer (KYC) norms and can be used both in India and abroad at ATMs and at merchant establishments.

“Canadian police have been informed and the cyber cell is working on the case, but we are yet to make any arrest,” said a police officer.

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