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Two teenage whistle-blowers, friends Pawan Poojary, 18, and Jayesh Dubey, 19, living in India, worked for Phoenix 007 call center in Thane, a suburb northeast of Mumbai. Their job was to pretend to be United States Internal Revenue Service agents.

Scam

Targeting Americans and exploiting fear by intimidation, they called insisting on money for back taxes or any number of explanations. By employing highly efficient methods, organizations make use of the psychological fact that Americans fear their state, bringing in huge amounts of money by multiple Modis Operandi scams.

India’s reputation has grown to the level that the country is seen as a principle center for fraud. Trainees are given an Americanized name and six-page script to read from.

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Once they reached a ‘sale’ the directions would be given for that person to purchase thousands of dollars’ worth of iTunes cards. The value of the cards would be transferred to the crooks once the target sent the codes.

Determined

According to the New York Times, “I just feel guilty at that time,” said Mr. Poojary, “We are also Indians. We also don’t have money. They also don’t have money.” Last Summer the two Indian teenagers reached out to Betsy Broder, the Federal Trade Commission’s counsel for international consumer protection in Washington, D.C.

Whistle-blowers

The whistle-blowers sought to give the details of a large spread scam targeting Americas. Ms. Broder found that the teenagers were determined. “The number of times he called me was overwhelming. I would guess that is why he was reaching out to me because he wanted some form of law enforcement to take it down.”

Raid

Senior crime branch police officer, Nitin Thakare, will not divulge who contacted him with the information.

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The raid involved 200 police officers, detaining the 700 workers inside the call center. Since 2013 the United States government has been compiling information and evidence in which many recent immigrants to America have lost over $100 million to the scam. In India, a call center employee makes about 16,000 rupees (about $230) per month with bonuses reaching double or triple that amount, built on sales. According to the Better Business Bureau, after the raid, there was a 95 percent drop in fraudulent Internal Revenue Service call to the United States.

“I think they actually are really afraid of their government,” Poojary said. “In India, people are not afraid of police. If anyone wants to come and arrest, they say, ‘Come and arrest.’ It is easy to get out of anything. But in America they are afraid.”