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| April 26, 2024

PAN Card Fraud Prevention Tips: Protecting Your Identity and Finances

With the increasing use of technology, online identification documents, and digital transactions, daily activities like paying bills, booking tickets, and applying for loans have become easier. However, the use of online platforms is leading to increased cases of identity theft, cybercrimes, and scams. The PAN (Permanent Account Number) card is one of the most widely used identification documents.

A PAN Card is a 10-digit unique identification alphanumeric number allocated to every Indian, especially tax-paying entities. Issued by the Government of India, this important document is used by the Income Tax Department to identify a taxpayer and track the inflow and outflow of their money. So, all the financial transactions and tax details of an individual can be tracked using the PAN Card Number.

Most people also use this card as their identity proof. However, the cases of fraud and identity theft using PAN Card numbers are on the rise. Fraudsters and cyber criminals use different techniques like skimming, vishing, and phishing to attain PAN Card details. As a result, many people have lost their money or faced scams. It is essential for everyone to use their PAN Card online safely and protect crucial information.

Checking Pan Card Frauds

A PAN Card fraud refers to the misuse of it for any criminal activities. It is vital to validate the authenticity of your PAN Card to evade any potential fraud. You can verify the validity of your PAN Card by visiting official websites such as NSDL and the Income Tax Department of India. You can also identify whether someone is misusing your PAN Card number by checking your credit score. Monitoring your credit score can help you see any unauthorised loans you did not take. Checking your credit score is vital to prevent misuse of your PAN Card.

Suggested Read: How to Do Pan Verification in Few Easy Steps?

Can Anyone Misuse My PAN card Number?

Remember, hackers and cyber criminals constantly look for just any details or vulnerabilities that can be used for their benefit. The PAN Cards contain crucial and sensitive information about an individual, such as name, date of birth, photograph, PAN Number, and signature. If this personal information is accessible to hackers, it can be misused in diverse ways.

They can use the PAN Card to open a new bank account in your name and carry out illegitimate activities from this account. Hackers can also use the PAN number to apply for loans or credit cards, making you liable for paying off the loan. In addition, the PAN Card can be used for identity theft or conducting illegal activities in your name, leaving long-term consequences.

Is It Safe to Give Pan a Card Number?

While providing your PAN Card Number is compulsory for several transactions, you must be cautious about sharing your card details. Casual or random sharing of your crucial PAN card information, online or offline, can lead to scams. So, you should avoid providing your PAN Card as ID proof and use any other option for an identity proof document. However, it is safe to share your PAN Card details with authorised people or organisations.

How to Stop the Misuse of PAN Card?

  • Do not keep your PAN card number and other relevant information on your PC or mobile phone.
  • Do not enter your full name or date of birth on random online portals, as these details can be used to find your PAN card number on the Income Tax website.
  • Other documents for ID proof, like voter ID cards, driver’s licenses, and Aadhar cards, are less vulnerable to scams. So, you must use your PAN card only when it is necessary.
  • Make sure to include the date and signature on the photocopy when submitting documents. Also, you must keep track of all the places where you have submitted photocopies of your PAN card.
  • Keep an eye on your bank account and financial transactions to ensure no suspicious transactions are being made on your PAN Card.
  • Keep both the original PAN Card and the photocopies safe.

How to Lock a PAN Card?

Most cases of PAN card fraud happen as a consequence of people losing or misplacing their cards and the information getting misused by scammers. So, if you suspect any discrepancy or have multiple PAN cards in your name, you can surrender or get it deactivated by visiting your local Income Tax Assessing Officer.

You can apply for a new PAN card online at Muthoot Finance! We provide a fast and hassle-free e-filing process at multiple branches. Visit your nearest Muthoot Finance branch to know more.

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