New Delhi: A man based out of Delhi, whose iPhone was snatched away from him, was scammed by cybercriminals who fooled him into sharing his Apple ID login details and turned off his ‘FindMy’ location tracking feature that is available for iPhone 11 and above models.
Even as we have heard of incidents in the past where Apple’s ‘FindMy’ has helped users find their lost or stolen. However, this time, an iPhone user named Vedant Khanduja was fooled by cybercriminals who sent him a phishing link via a reputable SMS gateway. Khanduja fell for the scam and shared the credentials of his Apple ID post which the scammers removed his lost iPhone from the account. Khanduja, took to Twitter to narrate the series of events. ABP Live spoke to him and here’s what he had to say.
Is Apple’s ‘FindMy’ app flawed?
It seems like the reassuring ‘FindMy’ app that Apple talks about, and that lets users locate a misplaced, or stolen iPhone so that it can be retrieved, may have been flawed in this case. The app is an offering that allows you to track your shut-off phone. According to the man, who was scammed, had his iPhone 12 updated to the latest iOS verion and also activated the ‘Find My iPhone’ and ‘Send Last Location’ features. However, his last location wasn’t traceable.
“I was on a call with Apple’s customer care support team about how the ‘Find My’ was not working. Whereas the newest latest update of iOS boasts that the app works even if the device is offline. I was on a call with them for almost 80 minutes. They were trying to explain to me how they’re unable to track the last location. That’s the explanation I got from Apple,” Khanduja told ABP Live over a call.
“So, they were trying to explain to me that it can only show the last location before the phone was switched off, but it was not even showing the last location. And they were like it could be a service error or there must not be any signal. I said I was a well-connected area,” he added.
Cyber Crimes Not Defined, Phishing Not Categorised As Crime Under IPC or IT Act: Cyberlaw Experts
“Phishing is not categorised as a crime either under the IT Act nor under the Indian Penal Code. Even the IT Rules 2021 does not give any effective remedy to victims of phishing attacks. So the time has come to update and keep based and topical, the cyberlaw frameworks of the country,” Pavan Duggal, a leading cyberlaw expert, told ABP Live.
He also warned that these kinds of highly-coordinated scams will be on the rise in the country.
“We will have to quickly start realising that while it will take some time for the law to be updated, we should start inculcating cybersecurity as a way of life. This can be done by getting more careful about the devices, about the data. There’s a need for having regular weekly backups. So that in the event, this kind of incident happens and your device gets stolen, at least your data is still with you. Most of the times it’s the quantum and the quality of the data that’s of immense value rather than the physical phone itself. And if you are not able to have your backup of your data, you feel completely helpless,” Duggal noted.
Note: Khanduja’s Twitter thread where he explained the ordeal is below.
Phishing awareness/alert 🚨
A thread 🪡
My iPhone was snatched this weekend while I was waiting at the roadside and using my phone. A pretty common scenario in Delhi from the past few years.
— Vedant (@vedantkhanduja) November 9, 2021