Bhubaneswar: An engineer with a government PSU recently received a video call from an anonymous number. To his surprise, a nude girl appeared on the other side. Before he could disconnect the call, cybercriminals made a quick video of the youth watching the porn clip.
This was the beginning of his horrific ordeal. “I received a few screenshots of my video call on chat and was asked to pay money to avoid embarrassment of a police case,” he said.
The young engineer coughed up at least Rs 25 lakh before filing a complaint with the Cyber police in Bhubaneswar. Cases as this are galore. The fraudsters take advantage of the gullible victims, their lack of knowledge, and panic, city-based Cyber Expert Prasant Sahu said.
“The gangs operate in the Mewat region of Haryana. Further, Bhiwadi, Tijara, Kishangarh Bas, Ramgarh, Laxmangarh in Alwar and Nagar, Pahadi and Govindgarh in Bharatpur also are the main areas where these cyber thugs are operating,” said Sahu.
Even if the victims block the number, they get audio calls from another number and are subject to ‘sextortion’.
“Of late, there has been a surge in such activities. Cyber criminals run recorded porn videos, and then send your recording back to you, asking for money which could be anywhere from Rs 10,000 to over a few lakh. If denied, they threaten to share your porn-watching video in your social media circles and the mental harassment begins afterward,” he added.
“It is very important to remember that under no circumstances, nothing that could if leaked into the public domain, cause harm or embarrassment at a later stage, should be posted, shared, transmitted, or recorded. During an online interaction or chat, if the person on the other side is trying to rush through the things and develop intimacy, then it is the cause of alarm,” he added.
Sahu added that the victims should be well aware that there are no chances these criminals can go public. “They actually do not have time for all this. Someone who is not scared of them, he/she is out of the list, and they move on to the next victim,”
So, it is very important for people to understand that even if someone blackmails following a video call, the matter should be immediately reported to the police, he added.