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Monday, Oct 14, 2019

Online stalking: Pune cyber cell registers 103 complaints

The complainants have said that unknown blackmailers are trying to extort $2,900 (Rs1,99,992.70) in bitcoins with the threat that their pornography-viewing activity will be exposed.

pune Updated: Mar 17, 2019 14:47 IST
Nadeem Inamdar
Nadeem Inamdar
Hindustan Times, Pune
A twenty-year-old youth, who was trapped by these cyber criminals after his porn viewing data was allegedly stolen by the online hackers, said the hackers had threatened to expose his identity and demanded money from him.
A twenty-year-old youth, who was trapped by these cyber criminals after his porn viewing data was allegedly stolen by the online hackers, said the hackers had threatened to expose his identity and demanded money from him.(HT Representative photo )
         

The Pune cyber cell has received at least 100 complaints stating that residents are being blackmailed via email with threats to reveal their pornography-viewing activity on social media and to people on their contact list.

These complainants have said that unknown blackmailers are trying to extort $2,900 (Rs1,99,992.70) in bitcoins with the threat that their pornography-viewing activity will be exposed.

The police have been trying to verify whether these threats are genuine.

A twenty-year-old youth, who was trapped by these cyber criminals after his porn viewing data was allegedly stolen by the online hackers, said the hackers had threatened to expose his identity and demanded money from him.

“Initially, I was afraid and discussed the issue with some elders who counselled me and asked me to approach the police. The cyber cell has registered my complaint and investigation is on. Since then no email has come from the cyber criminals,” he said.

The residents have complained to the cyber crime cell demanding a probe into the origin of these emails and establish the identity of online stalkers.

Niranjan Reddy, a cyber expert, advised, “Just ignore and delete these emails and if they keep coming contact the nearest cyber crime cell or police station.”

Police inspector Jairam Pawar, head of Pune police cyber cell, said, “We have received at least 100 such complaints regarding unidentified cyber criminals who have allegedly extracted personal data of pornography viewing habits of their targets and sought money from them. However, none of the victims has paid the cybercriminals and investigation is on in the cases,” he said.

Jyotipriya Singh, deputy commissioner of police (economic offences wing (EOW) and cyber cell), said, “The cyber cell was prompt in registering complaints related to online stalkers and necessary steps have been taken to educate citizens about cyber safety and how to protect one’s identity from the hackers.”

“Citizens must be alert and must not fall prey to the cyber criminals,” Singh said.

Besides, three complaints related to cyber criminals sending emails to companies have been registered where they have threatened to expose the personal data alleging wrongdoings of the company on social media. The three companies are startups in information technology (IT) sector.

First Published: Mar 17, 2019 14:46 IST

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