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Fraught by frauds The recent high profile fraud cases in our banking sector have deeply jolted all the stakeholders and have once again highlighted the vulnerability of our banks, specially while dealing with corporate loans and celebrity industrialists who manipulate the banking system by conveniently bypassing protective mechanisms. Successful economies minimise corruption, embezzlement and frauds which are characteristics existing everywhere but unfortunately for us, the instances of banking frauds which are a silent killer of our economy only seem to be on the rise as a result of corruption, inefficient regulations, lack of oversight, business pressures to meet unreasonable targets, lack of tools to identify potential red flags and collusion between employees and external parties. Whether it’s issuance of fake LoUs by two junior employees (as in case of PNB) or conflict of interest on the part of CEO ICICI Bank, it’s amply clear that our banking industry is confronted with deep internal threat wherein anyone from a CEO to lower level employees can manipulate and defraud their bank while both internal and external auditors look the other way. Such high profile frauds , scams and wilful defaults have a detrimental impact on the economy and ease of doing business, employees morale and investors' confidence. Indian banking has always been a soft target for fraudsters and in recent years the frequeny, volumes and gravity of frauds and wilful defaults have only seen a rise. We as a developing nation cannot afford such setbacks and need to get our act together. Fraud risk management needs to be given utmost importance and diligence in order to prevent and detect fraudulent activities thereby limiting the losses incurred. The banks need to be more agile and think ahead of the fraudsters. A comprehensive and effective anti frauds programme comprising preventive, detective and responsive mechanism can enable banks to identify weaknesses inherent to their processes and identify new threats. Over the years, frauds and scams in this sector have become more sophisticated and hence, their redressal is a major concern. Banks need to make themselves secure, become vigilant and build resilience in order to beat fraudsters in this cat and mouse chase. It is important for banks and financial institutions to understand that fraud investigations require specific skills like forensic accounting and technology to collect adequate evidence which needs to be relevant and comprehensive to be admissible in a Court of Law. Other important aspects like source of evidence, legitimate witness, electronic evidence can add credibility to the case. If these are not in line with legal requirements, the organisations will not have confidence to take legal recourse against the fraudster which can also be the reason why many banks may not be reporting all their cases to law enforcement agencies.
BEWARE, SOMEONE IS WATCHING The debates between Aadhaar card and privacy rights have been making headlines every now and then, where privacy has been a key focus. Doesn’t our society lack enough privacy as it is?Are we ready for Big Brother (Aadhaar card) eavesdropping, controlling and manipulating every aspect of our personal lives? There are heightened privacy concerns and questions over the security of biometric data in possession of the Unique Identification Authority Of India(UIDAI).Many have opined that it is an intrusive tool open to misuse by the Government or others. Another area of concern is that our country presently lacks cyber security norms and which , it would not be wrong to say, are almost non existential. Aadhaar card is a convenience, no doubt about that as it’s a never-fail identification document that we need and provides a unique identity to avail Govt schemes. However, UIDAI guidelines are not only confusing but also contradictory. On one hand, it’s website says, ”Aadhaar number empowers residents of India with a unique identity and a digital platform to authenticate anytime, anywhere and is accepted as proof of identity of the cardholder for any purpose.” On the other hand , it says that Aadhaar number should not be shared with anyone. While it says that biometric information is never shared, company like Reliance Jio is already collecting fingerprints of its customers to simplify the eKYC process which is nothing short of a 'privacy nightmare'. Leakage of Aadhaar data of cricketer M S Dhoni made headlines, however, similar leakages of lesser known mortals have gone unnoticed. A recent report by 'The Tribune' claims that it had gotten access to around a billion Aadhaar Numbers in 10 minutes by paying Rs500/- to an anonymous seller. A few more security breaches which have surfaced are: -Money in Bank accounts withdrawn fraudulently using Aadhaar data -210 Govt.websites made Aadhaar data public. -Water and sanitation ministry breached Aadhaar privacy. -Aadhar details of over 6 million people leaked on a website managed by the Jharkhand Directorate of social security. Hacking into databases for data is not very difficult for a person with the necessary motivation, skills and time. Systems are hack proof only until the first hack. So what is one supposed to do in these confusing times and discussions? Is there any way to ensure that personal data is not misused? Well yes, there are a few weapons available to a cardholder in terms of certain actions which can protect his personal data . A mechanism exists under which a card holder can choose to block his Aadhaar card along with his demographic and biometric information if he wants to opt out of the UIDAI system. Biometric data should be locked by the cardholder so that no one can access it and the same can be unlocked by following the process given in UIDAI website. A cardholder must not give a photocopy of Aadhaar card in Physical/digital form and must not share his/her Aadhaar number. If there’s no option but to produce a photocopy of Aadhaar card, the cardholder must write the purpose on it and must also self attest it. After all, someone has rightly said BETTER SAFE THAN SORRY. KMLAWASSOCIATES is the first choice of victims of security breaches in Delhi NCR. Whether it’s misuse of personal information or CCTV coverage, the professionally led , expert team of KMLAWASSOCIATES ensures that hassle free justice is delivered to those whose personal space has been encroached.
Should CRIME VICTIM COMPENSATION be a matter of mood or rationale? A 26yr old law student has been beaten to death by unknown people, outside a restaurant in Allahabad. Just about a week ago, a Delhi photographer was killed by his girlfriend's father and uncle. On 20.01.2018, a school principal in Yamunanagar, was allegedly shot dead in her office by her student . There have been numerous killings across the country in the name of honour, intolerance, road rage etc in recent times. Victims of such crimes are not only the ones who directly suffer the blow but also the family members who suffer mental, physical and economic harm as a result of the illegal activities of those who inflict the harm. The victims of such crimes have been provided certain safeguards in the Constitution of India under article 14& 21 and the laws governing compensation to these victims of crimes are contained in sections 357, 357(1), 357(2), 357(3), 357A, 358, 359 and 250 of Cr.P.C. However, there is no uniform policy on the compensation for victims of rape, riots, fire/other accidents, murder, etc., who are rather dependent on whimsical and irrational policy of relief. When there’s no uniform policy, how is one death deemed more deserving than the other?There is an urgent need for a rationale and clear method to award compensation where claims arise from loss of life on account of failure of public authorities. Presently, due to lack of legislation, States and their officials are wriggling out of their responsibilities by awarding arbitrary amounts in compensation. However, it is incorrect to let the mood of the state or the hype created by media be the deciding factors on how much compensation is announced by the state. In the absence of a uniform policy, politics(game of one upmanship), status of the victims or the community which they belong to or the media attention colour the decision of the state authorities in fixing the compensation amount and put a lid on such simmering controversies. It’s time to question the rationale and ask how the beneficiaries of these compensations are chosen since not all families coping with rape or murder of a loved one get treated equally. KMLAWASSOCIATES is a Dwarka based law firm with a commitment and dedication towards justice in all types of litigation.
Legislation against Self proclaimed Godmen(& women) India has a flourishing market for self styled Godmen(& women) who make millions by fooling and deceiving illiterate and ill-informed people in the name of spirituality.A close nexus between power, politics and money creates a perfect business model which enjoys political patronage. These self proclaimed Godmen are nothing but ambitious con artists and perverts hiding behind masks and deceptive garbs. They are minting money, abusing innocents, ruining multiple lives by deception, falsehood and religiosity in the name of God. They are emotionally, physically and financially exploiting people by manipulating their frailties. However, now in the wake of violent incidents and illegal activities in the name of spirituality all over the country, there's a need to curb these Godmen and save people from becoming their victims. Though one feels that education and literacy is a solution to many a problems, it is not enough when it comes to these Godmen as a large number of their followers come from well educated people, politicians, filmstars, business tycoons, who endorse them for their own vested interests. India's obsession with these Godmen can only be cured with a qualitative change in the social consciousness, which may take a long time and keeping this in view, there is a need for legislation against such Godmen who con people in the name of God by taking advantage of their fears and insecurities. They gain power over minds of gullible people who seek instant and magical solutions to their various problems, not realising that the power to save themselves lies within each one of them. Without any further delay, Govt.should enact a law and protect its people from becoming victims of these impostors who call themselves'spiritually evolved'.
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