The Tamil Nadu police has sought the assistance of Interpol in the investigation of 12 online cheating cases with the arrest of Nigerian nationals in numerous cases in the state.
"In most of the cases, Nigerians are the masterminds and the cybercrime wing of CB-CID has arrested four Nigerians," the CB-CID said in a release here.
The online crimes concerned lottery and job frauds and the agency has registered 13 cases this year and 25 since 2007.
As part of their modus operandi, the Nigerians used to recruit Indian account holders, called money mules, to provide their bank account details, ATM and other bank details for a commission.
In this type of online cheating, the culprits randomly choose mobile numbers and send group SMS and e-mails luring victims saying they had won an high prize in cash or lottery draw in the names of established brands. It further asked them to respond by paying a small sum as processing fee for "realising the money," the police statement said.
"At times, the victims of these frauds are persuaded to part with important personal details like bank account number and credit card number which could cause further damage," it said.
A similar modus operandi was being followed for job frauds when people were asked to pay money for various purposes only to be duped, the release added.
The CB-CID arrested four Nigerians from Mumbai and 14 Indian account holders/ money mules from Chennai, Mumbai and Bangalore among others who were involved in various cases of online cheating.
Police has warned people against responding to such SMS/e-mails and desist from disclosing personal banking details.
In a recent case, a Tircuhirappalli-based businessman lost lakhs of rupees after such culprits managed to siphon off money through fraudulent means.