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Ministry of Home Affairs Warns of Rising Digital Arrest Scams: All You Need to Know | Tech News | #cybercrime | #computerhacker


The Ministry of Home Affairs warns citizens about cyber criminals posing as law enforcement officials to carry out blackmail and extortion. The Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C) is taking measures to combat these scams, including blocking Skype IDs and SIM cards used by fraudsters. Citizens are advised to report suspicious activities to the cybercrime helpline.


Ministry of Home Affairs Issues Alert on Cyber Blackmail Schemes

Key Highlights

  • Indian authorities warn against cyber criminals impersonating law enforcement agencies.
  • Victims are being blackmailed through fake police and digital arrest scams.
  • Report suspicious calls to the cybercrime helpline 1930 or visit www.cybercrime.gov.in.

New Delhi: The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has issued a warning to citizens about a rising trend of cyber criminals impersonating law enforcement agencies to carry out blackmail, extortion, and “Digital Arrests.” These fraudsters are posing as officials from the Police, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Narcotics Department, Reserve Bank of India (RBI), and other agencies to deceive victims and extort money.

The Modus Operandi

These cyber criminals use a variety of tactics to trick victims. Typically, they call potential victims and claim that they have sent or are supposed to receive a parcel containing illegal items such as drugs or fake passports. In some cases, they claim that a relative or friend of the victim is involved in a crime or accident and is in their custody. The fraudsters then demand money to resolve the “case.”

In more extreme cases, victims are subjected to a “Digital Arrest,” where they are forced to remain visible on Skype or other video conferencing platforms until their demands are met. To appear genuine, these criminals use studios designed to look like police stations or government offices and wear uniforms.

Impact and Response

Many victims across the country have lost significant amounts of money to these scams, which are believed to be operated by cross-border crime syndicates. The Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre (I4C), under the Ministry of Home Affairs, is working diligently to combat these cybercrimes.

Measures Taken by I4C

The I4C has blocked over 1,000 Skype IDs involved in these activities in collaboration with Microsoft. Additionally, it is facilitating the blocking of SIM cards, mobile devices, and mule accounts used by the fraudsters. I4C is also providing inputs and technical support to state and UT police authorities for identifying and investigating these cases.

I4C has issued various alerts through infographics and videos on its social media platform ‘Cyberdost’ on X, Facebook, Instagram, and others to educate the public about these frauds.

How to Protect Yourself

Citizens are advised to be vigilant and spread awareness about these types of frauds. If you receive such a call, report it immediately to the cybercrime helpline number 1930 or visit www.cybercrime.gov.in for assistance.

Key Measures Taken by I4C

Measure Description
Blocking Skype IDs Over 1,000 Skype IDs blocked in collaboration with Microsoft
Blocking SIM cards Facilitating the blocking of SIM cards and mobile devices used by fraudsters
Mule Accounts Identifying and blocking mule accounts
Public Awareness Issuing alerts through ‘Cyberdost’ on social media platforms like X, Facebook, Instagram
Technical Support Providing inputs and technical support to state and UT police authorities

As cybercrimes continue to evolve, it is crucial for citizens to stay informed and cautious. The I4C, along with other agencies, is working hard to combat these scams and protect the public. Always report suspicious calls to the cybercrime helpline or the National Cyber Crime Reporting Portal to ensure swift action.

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