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PAN Card Fraud - Types of PAN Card Scam & Preventions

What is PAN card fraud?

PAN or Permanent Account Number is a ten-digit unique alphanumeric identification number assigned primarily to the income taxpayers of this country. However, presently, non-taxpaying individuals can also access this document. Therefore, irrespective of its purpose in tax payment, this also serves as identity proof for Indians.

However, there have been increased cases of PAN card fraud in recent years, leaving Indians susceptible to financial losses and identity theft.

You can go through the information discussed further below for details about PAN card misuse and how to avoid it.

How to check if someone is using your PAN card?

You can check if someone is committing PAN card fraud by checking your cibil score. You will get to know all the loans taken against your name via this process. In case of any discrepancy in the credit score, you can identify the fraud and get other related details.

You can follow these steps to check your credit/CIBIL score online:

  • Step 1: You can utilise the services of CIBIL, Experian, Equifax or CRIF High Mark. Visit the website of any credit bureau you find convenient
  • Step 2: Locate the ‘Check CIBIL Score’ option
  • Step 3: Enter a few details, such as your name, date of birth, email ID, PAN and mobile number.

Upon entering these details, you will be able to access your credit score and identify misuse of PAN card, if present.

Types of PAN card fraud

Today, the need for Permanent Account Number (PAN) is finding its way into various areas, which increases the risk of a PAN card scam. Here are the multiple ways through which hackers can target to misuse your PAN details:

  • Applying for loans or credit cards
  • Perpetrators can use your PAN details to apply for loans or credit cards and use them to fund illegal activities. However, the onus of it will be on your shoulders. You will be held responsible for repaying the dues and dealing with whatever legal consequences it will bring.

  • Purchase jewellery illegally

  • Since purchasing jewellery above a certain threshold in India requires one to submit their PAN details, your PAN will be required for purchasing expensive jewellery. In case of any misuse of PAN cards in such instances, the IT department may summon you to provide a logical explanation of such incidents.

  • Renting hotel rooms and vehicles

  • While checking into a hotel room in India, you must submit your identity proof. Scammers generally enter identity details from stolen PAN cards to hide their identity. If any illegal event happens in these hotel rooms, authorities reach out to the person’s registered ID, and this proof is generally hoaxed or spoofed.

    A similar example of PAN card misuse is renting a car in your name and using it for trafficking, smuggling, and other illegal activities.

    People tend to make the mistake of ignoring the significance of PAN cards. It is an important document used in almost all kinds of transactions. Thus, you must know how to safeguard your personal details.

How to protect yourself from PAN card scams?

You can follow these tips to avoid PAN card fraud:

  • Avoid entering your PAN details on unknown sites. Check the website’s authenticity by seeing whether it has an ‘https’ tag in its URL stating the presence of an SSL certificate before entering any personal details. However, you must provide identification details and try to feed in your Voter ID or DL, which are less vulnerable to fraud.
  • Even when you submit photocopies of your PAN, sign them along with the date lowering the chances of using such documents for any illegal purposes.
  • Avoid feeding in your full name or date of birth to unknown websites. Hackers can use this data to track your PAN.
  • Conduct credit score checks at regular intervals. Upon finding any discrepancy, it should be your primary duty to report it to the regulatory body at the earliest.
  • If you have saved your personal information or PAN details on your phone, ensure to delete them. 
  • You can buy card protection plan offered by Bajaj Finserv for the safety of your PAN card. Know about wallet care card protection plan and buy today!

Frequently asked questions on PAN card fraud

Can someone fraud with a PAN card?

Yes, PAN card fraud has become increasingly significant in recent times. There have been many cases where individuals have reported misuse of PAN details to secure loans.

How can I know my PAN card is misused?

You can find out if someone is misusing your PAN card by checking your credit score. To do that, you need to visit the website of one of the credit bureaus and check your CIBIL score. 

Can we give PAN to anyone?

It is not advisable to give your PAN to anyone as it can lead to PAN card misuse. As a responsible individual, you must try to refrain from providing your personal details on unknown websites. 

How can I stop my PAN card misuse?

You can avoid PAN card fraud by not entering your PAN details everywhere. Use your PAN only when it is essential. In addition, you should keep a record of the different platforms where you have provided your PAN. 

Did you know, a good CIBIL score can help you get a better deal on loans and credit cards?