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Internet crooks cheat residents out of $3.8m this year alone – The Royal Gazette

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Internet crooks cheat residents out of $3.8m this year alone – The Royal Gazette


Created: Dec 28, 2021 07:59 AM

On the rise: Police warn of increasing cyber frauds costing the public millions this year (Image supplied)

Island residents were swindled out of almost $4 million this year by internet fraudsters, police have revealed.

A police spokesman said that “entire life savings” had been lost in some cases.

But the authorities have managed to recover only $40,600.

Detective Chief Inspector Sherwin Joseph of the special investigations unit said the cost of computer crime totted up to more than 3.8 million for the year.

E-mails hustles accounted for 56 per cent of cases, social-media scams made up 22 per cent and a string of other tactics were employed for the other 22 per cent.

Mr Joseph highlighted remote access fraud, where people are targeted with phone calls claimed to be from reputable telecommunications or computer firms from abroad or on the island.

Victims were offered help for a slow computer – or asked to download software because their antivirus protection had expired.

But the fraudsters instead seized control of target computers and demanded cash or they would release embarrassing personal information or accessed online banking on the quiet and stole money.

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