UAE: Police issue fresh warning against cybercrimes


Abu Dhabi - The police have launched the “Be careful” campaign to further create awareness among residents about cybercrimes.


Ismail Sebugwaawo

Published: Wed 31 Mar 2021, 4:25 PM

Abu Dhabi Police have issued a fresh warning to residents about growing incidents of mobile phone scammers and online cybercrimes, including blackmail, bullying, extortion, and fake online job posts.

The police have launched the “Be careful” campaign to further create awareness among residents about cybercrimes.

Lieutenant-Colonel Sultan Al Yahya, Director, Social Support Centre, Abu Dhabi Police, warned the public about suspicious websites, dodgy links, and fake advertisements that lure unsuspecting victims to part with their hard-earned cash.

Police have urged caution against children falling prey to online blackmailers, who often disguise themselves as young women. They post fake pictures of young women on social media platforms to lure youngsters and ask for their personal information in a bid to blackmail them.

Lieutenant-Colonel Al Yahya advised youngsters to steer clear from accepting online friendship requests from strangers and report to the police about the blackmailers.

He cited an example of an incident, which was reported earlier this week, to highlight the growing menace. The police had to come to the rescue of a young woman, who was blackmailed by a stranger who she had ‘befriended’ on a social media platform.

Initially, the accused used her pictures, which she had exchanged on the social media platform, to blackmail her, and later threatened to kill her, if she dared to end the relationship.

Lieutenant-Colonel Al Yahya urged parents to monitor their children’s online activities to avoid a recurrence of these untoward incidents and be vigilant about the social media content that the kids consume.

“Parents should discourage their children from interacting with strangers online and avoid sharing their personal information with any unknown person,” he said.

He cautioned that scammers might pose as women to gain victims’ trust, and then use their personal photographs in a bid to blackmail them to extract money.

According to Federal Law No. 5 of 2012, people found guilty of online crimes can be sentenced to a two-year jail term and also liable to pay a fine between Dh250,000 and Dh500,000.

The public has been urged to report cybercrimes by making a call to the Aman service's hotline number (8002626).

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