What: Vanishing Ink Fraud, also known as “Magic Ink Fraud” is done using a special pen containing ink, which when heated to a certain degree, vanishes. This fraudulent method is mostly used to misuse cheques issued by customers.
How: Fraudsters primarily approach their intended victims, disguising themselves as officers from different financial institutions offering various products like Personal Loans, Credit Cards etc. Once the victim agrees to apply for the financial facilities, fraudsters collect all relevant documents including latest bank statement and fill in the application and security cheque (in favour of the bank) using the “Magic Pen” and take customer’s signature using a normal pen. Since they have the bank statement of the customer, they know the account balance, they heat the cheque which erases the magic ink, fill it in their own name and withdraw funds.
- Before providing any personal information/document, always cross-check the bona-fides of the individual representing the financial organization by checking his official photo ID card/visiting card.
- Always use your own pen to fill any applications and cheque.
- Never Issue a blank Cheque and always fill in the beneficiary name and make it an “Account Payee”.
- When in doubt contact the financial organization on their published contact numbers and confirm that the representative is indeed genuine and working with the organization he or she claims to represent.