Madiha Ali
Pakistani news anchor, Madiha Ali, shares how a teenager used her pictures to make a fake profile online Image Credit: Facebook

A television news anchor from Lahore, Pakistan, was shocked to find out that a 16-year-old was using her pictures to extort money online. But she chose not to shame him, instead she shared the incident on social media for awareness and kept the youngster's identity hidden.

Lahore’s Cyber Crime Reporting Centre (CCRC) took action against the grade eight student upon Madiha Abid Ali's request.

In a June 30 Facebook post, Ali, who describes herself in her account's 'about' section as a journalist who has been in the media industry for 10 years, quoted CCRC’s report: “Here are the activities of a 16-year-old boy. Who had several accounts on digital platforms. This school boy was directly involved in extorting money deceitfully from innocent citizens impersonating me (Madiha Abid Ali).”

The report also stated that Ali’s public image was impacted as a result: “The person is not only making fool of people, but also damaging Madiha Abid Ali's social life.”

Disclosing why she censored the picture she posted on her Facebook page of the youngster, she wrote: “I am not revealing this boy's face because I think by doing so, he might have difficulties to complete his education. And I want him to be educated so that he would be able to study law and will never get involved in such activities. This has to be a public service message for all digital criminals.”

In her post, Ali also shared screenshots of the fake profile and her pictures the boy used.

In response to Ali’s complaint, the Federal Investigation Agency Lahore traced the culprit and took action against him.

According to the agency: “The alleged person used to create fake accounts of reputed persons using their pictures taken from their personal Facebook account. The 16-year-old was also involved in extorting money in the form of recharge cards of cellular networks.”

Facebook users appreciated Ali’s “message” and the fact that she chose not to disclose the boy’s identity.

User Asad Abbas Gill commented: “Well done and very positive gesture of not revealing the identity!”

TheLana Ze wrote: “Well done I like the last action that you didn’t show his face. You still want him to get an education.”