How to Prevent Yourself from Falling to Types of UPI Frauds in India


Online transactions have become a convenient way of handling expenses nowadays. With just a few taps and clicks, you can do your daily shopping, pay bills, and even transfer funds. A Unified Payments Interface (UPI) is one of the most common ways of carrying out online transactions. But, as with all great things, there is often a downside—you risk being scammed.

As UPI is still a relatively new payment method, there are many aspects of it that people are unaware of. Let’s learn more about how frequently UPI frauds occur and how to avoid them.

Types of UPI Frauds

  • Phishing

Phishing occurs when a scammer sends an email or an SMS with illegal links to commit fraud. If you click on the links in such emails and SMSes, you will be routed to your phone’s UPI app, which can start an auto-debit from your bank account. In addition, these links can also introduce malware or viruses to your device.

  • Unverified Links

You do have to scan QR codes or click on links to receive money using UPI. Many UPI frauds trick you by sending a bogus payment link. These links can steal your money.

  • Remote Screen Tracking

Many apps nowadays request your personal information, such as your email address and date of birth, after installation. If you download applications from a third-party source, be cautious while giving your UPI ID and pin. Make sure you only download software from reliable sources.

  • False Calls

Fraudsters will call you, pretending to be bank officers, and request your UPI pin or make you install a third-party application for verification. It will give them entry to your personal data and account details.

  • Deceptive UPI Handles

Nowadays, social media is a major source of many UPI frauds. Many sites have the same handle names as the genuine ones, and people fall for them. These scammers may use screenshots to carry out their schemes, and before you know it, they will have taken your money. As a result, avoid displaying any UPI-related data in public or on social media.

Dos and Don’ts to Prevent UPI Fraud

  • Don’t give anyone your bank account details, debit or card details, PIN, or OTP. If you are asked to provide such information by someone posing as an official spokesperson from your lender or the mobile app, request that they send you an email for the same. Do not share your email address, since they should have it if they are genuine. Also, only reply to emails from the authorised domain of your bank or payment app.
  • Remember that you do not need to “pay” or insert your UPI pin to accept funds on your UPI app. 
  • Installing third-party apps that allow screen sharing should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.  
  • Always use the customer service number of your bank given on your card, chequebook, or passbook. Do not use the numbers taken from the Internet, as these may not be valid.  
  • Never call back or entertain unverified phone calls, even if the person calling sounds very genuine. 
  • Always install mobile banking apps and UPI apps from authorised online application stores. In fact, as most banks include UPI in their phone banking applications, there is no demand for you to install or utilise any third-party banking or UPI apps.

How To File a Complaint For UPI Payment Fraud?

Here’s what you should do if you are a victim of UPI fraud.

  1. Raise a dispute with your bank directly.
  • Notify your bank regarding the UPI fraud payment by calling customer service. Make a note of the complaint number.
  • If calling does not work, send an email or a letter to your bank’s branch manager.
  1. Contact your UPI payment portal.
  • Call Google Pay, Paytm, PhonePe, and other UPI app systems to register a complaint.
  1. File a complaint with the cybercrime police.
  • Contact the National Cyber Crime Helpline at 155260 in under 2 hours of a UPI fraud.
  • After more than 2 hours, file a complaint with the National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal. Insert all the theft information. The investigating authority will look into this issue and attempt to return your money.
  • You could also register an FIR at the closest cybercrime office.

Tips for Using UPI Safely for Digital Exchanges

  • Ensure a full-screen lock.

A display lock with a strong PIN or password is suggested for your UPI apps. You must not use commonly known details about yourself as your password or PIN, such as your phone number or birth date.

  • Do not share your PIN. 

A personal identification number (PIN) is required for UPI verification. Anyone who knows your PIN can access and use your UPI app to transfer money. So, do not share your PIN with strangers or even family members unless the situation demands it. If you believe your PIN has been compromised, change it right away.

  • Do not tap on unfamiliar links or answer spam calls.

If you are not sure how genuine the call you received from the bank was, do not entertain it again. Also, do not reveal confidential information to such callers, as they might use the data to access your UPI app and steal your money. Such callers can pose as officials of a business you use and request confidential information. Banks never ask customers for personal information such as an OTP, password, or PIN.

  • Ensure that you regularly update your UPI app

UPI app creators continue to send alerts with new safety attributes to clients who use the service. It’s a great way to keep your UPI software on your phone up-to-date and auto-downloaded.


Online transactions have become a very common way of managing regular expenditures. However, one should use online payment platforms carefully, as many frauds and scams also take place through these apps. Always download valid applications from verified sources and avoid entertaining calls and other communication from unknown callers and numbers. Also, never disclose your personal information, such as your PIN and bank account number, to anyone, as these are not required by a third party when you make a UPI payment. To know more about UPI frauds, visit Piramal Finance for related blogs and explore their products and services.