Did Ola Get Scammed Out of Crores by Almost 12,000 Cab Drivers?
Can such a large heist be pulled off in a multi-million dollar company?
Cab aggregators have been in the spotlight for a while, be it for surge pricing or for converting to cleaner fuel, CNG.
Now, there’s a possible scam that has been brewing in Ola, which was put out on Twitter, claiming that 11,600 cab drivers used a software that allowed them to take the freebies offered by the company while also not having to serve any passengers.
The Twitter user Neha Garg revealed in her tweet thread there’s a software that cab drivers can install in their phones, costing Rs 80,000, available at Kota, Rajasthan. They can then dupe customers by the app showing them the cab is near them, when in actuality it isn’t.
There are five people involved – the driver and four “riders”. The riders have about 500 sim cards between them and one Ola-registered phone. They drive around the same path, booking cabs from different accounts, while no real cab rides are done.
This led the group to earn nearly Rs 30,000 a day, as the software helped them mitigate the risk of a pattern that would emerge on the route.
This “fraud” continued for seven whole months before Ola caught on to it.
The group was determined to fight back and they got another 1,000 sim cards to repeat the process all over again.
After being blacklisted by Ola, these cabs moved to Uber, as the driver went on to describe.
The Quint got in touch with Ola’s spokesperson who said that they take utmost care on both the passenger and driver’s side to make sure that no such fraudulent activity can go through the radar.
We have incorporated stronger mobile identity verification, unique OTP check before starting the ride, automated allotment and institution of machine learning to detect suspicious behaviour and arrest any kind of attempt of malpractices on the Ola platform over the years.Ola Spokesperson
The spokesperson also said that this could be an attempt to malign the brand.
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