Online frauds up during coronavirus pandemic


Different thugs and organized rackets have become very active to cheat netizens amidst the coronavirus pandemic across the country, sources from different law enforcing agencies said.

Cheats and frauds, designing sly deceits and traps, have remained active to deceive the innocent people exploiting the Covid-19 situation as law enforcers have urged people not to respond to any tricky move of the criminals. 

According to CID, who conducted drives against fraudsters in recent times, plenty of fraudulent acts occurred through the social media pages and advertisements by collecting mobile numbers and debit-credit card information of people. 

Forgeries of fake plasma selling groups have also been spotted.

Earlier on July 21, the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) arrested 12 Nigerians and a former student of University of Dhaka, Turna, from Pallabi area.

According to the CID, Turna used to become friends with different people on Facebook. She along with her cohorts conned nearly hundred people. They were used to alluring them with the temptation of foreign gifts. In this way, they swindled Tk 5 crore.

On the other hand, Dhaka Metropolitan Police’s (DMP) Detective Branch recently arrested Shahid Ullah, managing director of Crest Securities Company, his wife Nipa Sultana Nupur and one of their assistants for indulging in fraudulent acts.

This company has recently taken crores of taka from the people by using beautiful women with its luxurious office from Motijheel area.

DMP Additional Commissioner of Police (DB) Abdul Baten said, “During the interrogation the trio has confessed to embezzling of huge money.”

DB sources also said, “Members of the plasma fraud ring first collect information from people seeking plasma for corona patients through social media. Then they claim to be corona-free and offer plasma to the targeted persons.” 

Then they pretend as plasma donors and seek money from the infected patients. They claim Tk 10 thousand to Tk 30 thousand for each plasma donor. However, they switch off their mobile phones immediately the money is realized, DB police sources added.

In this regard, Walid Hossain, Deputy Commissioner (media and public relations) of DMP, said that many victims did not want to report such matters to law enforcement agencies. It becomes an easy escape for the cons.

“We have taken a zero tolerance policy against the swindlers. Several fraudsters have been arrested so far. Our drives will continue to halt such crimes.” he added.

Tackling of crime is a big challenge for law enforcers amid the corona situation, said crime researcher and analyst Rafiqul Islam.

“Cheating people online is easy nowadays because most of the people prefer to buy or sell their products online to avoid the spreading of coronavirus. People should check authenticity of anything before any transaction or sharing their information,” he said.

He also said, “Be aware of frauds. And inform police if any suspicious activity is noticed.”