UAE | Crime

Dubai Police warn against cyber criminals

Complaints filed this year include 110 scams, 108 cases of stolen phone line and 70 cases of blackmail, threats and libel

  • By Dina Aboul Hosn, Staff Reporter
  • Published: 00:00 August 22, 2011
  • Gulf News

Dubai: People still fall prey to cyber crime despite their knowledge of risks and repeated warnings from police, with 271 cases reported in the first six months of this year, Dubai Police has said.

Complaints filed this year include 110 scams, 108 cases of stolen phone line and 70 cases of blackmail, threatening and libel.

"Although we issue many warnings through various means to inform the public about lottery and free gift scams which are sent to their emails, some still fall for them," Major Rashid Lootah, Director of cyber evidence at Dubai Police's Forensic Evidence and Criminology Department.

When these people are contacted by scammers who inform them that they had won a prize and need to send their account numbers or transfer money as fees to be able to receive the award, many still comply.

"People respond to these scams and then report them after they lose their money and find that they have been tricked," Maj Lootah said.

He also urged BlackBerry users to be aware and not add strangers to BB Messenger, since police received many complaints from people who were blackmailed after someone they added managed to hack their phone and get hold of their personal information and pictures.

"Do not open links that appear when you browse through your BlackBerry, because most of them contain viruses that enable the other party to hack your phone and view all your files and pictures," he said.

Cyber evidence specialists processed 261 cases in the first half of this year, including piracy, theft, dishonesty, harassment, intellectual copyright violations and others.

Other cases include forgery of credit cards and duplicating the websites of some major companies and service providers, which lure people into logging in and making a payment on these websites using their credit card information.

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