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Criminal with a laptop

The advent of the Internet has made our lives so easy and simple that we can order anything across the Globe using the internet and pay for it using our cards and net banking facilities and so much so we can even talk to people using video calling facilities even if they are tens of thousand km away. As much as the Internet and cyberspace have made our life easy, it has been a horror for few people who fall victim to crimes done on the Internet which is done by fraudsters who are operating from remote parts of the globe. The challenge here is the jurisdictional issues our Indian law regulating the Internet, the Information Technology Act, 2000 faces are also vast as we may have to extradite the criminal who committed the crime from some other part of the world.

SOME OF THE KINDS OF INTERNET CRIMES


1. Phishing

The act of Phishing or email scam can be referred to as fishing for information and the fraudsters are on the lookout for information to be stolen and misused online. In this type of crime, the fraudsters may send you an e-mail, for instance, purportedly looking akin to the one from your banker asking to enter your details to update your ‘Know Your Customer’ (KYC) norms for instance and when u type it out the fraudster gets all of your personal information from you itself. We must not respond to such e-mails but rather report it to our banker at the earliest instance.


2. Online shopping frauds

Under this type of internet crime, the fraudster may launch a frivolous website and advertise products to be sold and make payment gateways, and once you order for a product and pay for it, you may never see your product being delivered home so much so neither will you see your money back as the customer care number the fraudster would’ve posted in the site would also be dubious as the site itself. We need to exercise caution before purchasing such things online.


3. Identity Theft

Under identity theft, The information (data) we type online as in our personal data, for instance, to apply for a loan, maybe tapped by fraudsters and used without our knowledge to commit online crimes for which we may thus be held liable for instance creating fake social media accounts and posting derogatory messages.


4. Lottery Fraud

Even to-date, many of us would be receiving e-mails saying we have won so many dollars online and if we deposit the processing charges into a given account then we could claim the entire lottery amount which is a scam by itself. Hence, people must refrain from responding to such unknown mails from unknown senders.


5. Credit Card Reward Points Fraud

Now, in this COVID-19 Times, banks are particularly warning their customers to avoid revealing their One Time Password (OTP) to encash reward points as scammers have turned to use this as an opportunity to siphon people off their hard-earned rewards. We must not disclose the OTP to any third party as it is our sole responsibility not to disclose the OTP to anyone.


6. Social Media Crimes

The use of social media to connect with our friends is a positive side but a lot of cyberbullying happens on social media and many of which go unreported and the cybercriminals take advantage of this to harass their victims by their personally identifiable information. Thus, responding to unknown people on social media must be avoided at all costs to avoid such types of crimes.


CONCLUSION

Thus, these are few kinds of internet crimes that are being done by cybercriminals to extort data (information) and money online illegally and also harass their victims into parting with such details. We must make use of the internet very diligently so that we can have a taste of its positive side alone and not fall prey to the negative activities online.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Adv. Meyyappan Kumaran is an advocate / LLM (business law) 2 nd year student at the Tamil Nadu Dr. Ambedkar Law University, School of Excellence in Law.

They can be contacted at kumarmeyyappan2007@gmail.com

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