Dubai: Indulging in an act of cyber extortion or blackmail can land you in jail for up to two years as well as a heavy fine of Dh500,000, the UAE’s Public Prosecution has warned.
In an awareness message on its social media accounts, the authority raised awareness on Article 16 of the Federal Decree-Law No. 5 of 2021, concerning the combatting of cybercrimes, which stipulates the penalty for the crime of cyber blackmail.
As per the law, the penalty can be more severe if the victim is threatened to commit a crime or behave in a way that is morally offensive.
The penalty shall be imprisonment for a duration of not more than 10 years if the subject of threat is to commit a crime or to commit acts that are offensive to honour or status.
The UAE’s judicial and regulatory authorities regularly raise awareness on issues related to digital safety. Earlier this month, the Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority (TDRA) had also educated online users about how cyber blackmail is an endless loop – if you comply with the demands of online blackmailers once, they will continue to exploit the fear. Instead, the TDRA advised users to immediately report such online blackmail attempts to the Al Ameen Service.
As reported by Gulf News earlier, if you are facing cyber extortion or blackmail, the Al Ameen service as well as police platforms can be used to confidentially report cyber blackmail.
Al Ameen service
Toll Free : 800 4888
Fax : 800 4888
SMS : 4444
Email : email@example.com
Website : www.alameen.gov.ae
Twitter : @AlAmeenService
WhatsApp Mobile : 050 8566657
Dubai Police’s website - ecrime.ae
Here is how you can report a cyber blackmail case to Dubai Police:
• Visit www.ecrime.ae
• Answer the question: ‘Is the report submitted related to the internet or cyberspace? (Email, social media, internet calls, cybercrime, hacking, blackmail)’.
• Choose the complaint type: Personal, private entity, local government entity or federal entity.
• Submit your Emirates ID electronically.
• Submit your address, mobile number and email ID.
• The platform will text you a verification code to your mobile phone, which you then enter on the platform.
This service is specific to crimes that have happened within the geographical scope of the emirate of Dubai.
My Safe Society
This is an app by UAE Public Prosecution, available for Apple and Android devices. You can download the app and once you have verified your mobile number, you can simply upload a website link, image, audio or video to raise your complain.
Abu Dhabi Police’s Aman services
Toll free: 800 2626
You can also report cybercrimes to the nearest police station in your area, or call 999 for help. To read a detailed guide on how you can protect yourself from being blackmailed online, click here.