New Delhi: The Pig Butchering scam, as warned by Nithin Kamath from Zerodha, is a deceptive scheme of the digital world where scammers trick people, making them believe in fake job offers, high-return investments, or relationships. They use bogus profiles to gain trust, pretending to offer love and friendship, and then persuade victims to send money. The name “Pig Butchering” suggests fattening the victim before ‘butchering,’ or deceiving them out of their money.
Kamath highlighted the alarming scale of this scam, emphasizing how many fall for these traps in India and globally. It’s a widespread issue, and people get pulled into it thinking they’re entering legit opportunities, only to lose their money. The recent case involving Tamilians trapped in Myanmar and saved by local police sheds light on the seriousness of the situation.
Double Whammy By Scammers
Usually, victims fall into a trap spread by scammers in the scams. Kamath said what makes these scam even more cruel is the person scamming could also be a victim of another type of scam. In simple terms, a victim is being forced by scammers to trap others coercively. Therefore, they are also attempting to pig butchering the innocents.
“Many fall into the trap of international job offers from scammy companies. Once abroad, they are held captive and forced to scam Indians by building trust using social media platforms, typically using fake profiles of the opposite sex,” Kamath added in the post.
The scale of pig butchering scams in India runs into tens of thousands of crores. It is scary how many people fall for fake job offer scams, scammy high-return investment schemes and crypto investments, etc.
How to protect against the Pig butchering scam?
Kamath shared some tips for Indians to protect themselves against the scam.
- Never reply to unknown messages on WhatsApp, Social media platforms and dating apps.
- If someone asks you to download some new apps or open links, that’s a red flag.
- These scams rely on exploiting your emotions, like hopes, fears, dreams and greed. Never react in a hurry.
- Don’t panic. Most people fall for these scams because they react in a hurry.
- When in doubt, go to the nearest police station or talk to a lawyer.
- If someone promises something like a job or high returns or asks you for money, it’s a red flag.
- Never ever share personally identifiable information like your Aadhaar, Passport or your financial information like bank details, investment details, etc.
- If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Digital world is the zone of double-edge sword. It has both pros and cons. Scammers, hackers and wrong elements are constantly trying to loot your money, sensitive information or personal details. The best way to deal against these ever-evolving scams is to stay alert and cautious. Don’t let your guards down.
“It is essential to talk about this frequently with as many people as possible, given the scale of the problem. Everyone around us is a potential victim, regardless of whether they are educated or not. Quick money and a job abroad is a honeypot that gets many Indians to act instinctively,” Kamath said.
He said the Government through its cybercrime division is trying to fight and improve India’s response.