Cybercrime Witnesses Sharp Jump in Odisha, Up 31% Year-on-year

Cybercrime in Odisha saw a big jump in 2020 compared to 2019 as the total volume of cases registered increased by 31%. Around 1,931 cases were registered in 2020, as against 1,475 cases in the preceding year.

A majority of new-age cybercriminals attempt to dupe hapless victims of their money through online fraud. Owing to the lockdown, several businesses and individuals went online, and even transactions on platforms such as UPI saw a formidable jump. The criminals took advantage of this fact and illicitly transferred money to their accounts from people who had joined the digital bandwagon but did not have sufficient understanding of the same.

Some cases of fake news and similar circulation of disputable news were also registered, particularly concerning the imposition of lockdowns and other audio/video clips. “We found most cases, relating to fraud after transactions through net banking, debit/credit cards and UPI payments. Lockdown had prompted people to stay indoors and increased their dependency on online banking. Restrictions on the movement of people, apprehension of virus infection through cash and availability of commodities through online platforms made people vulnerable to cyber frauds,” a senior police officer said.

The state police headquarters has recently taken a proactive step in dealing with cybercrime and has asked the police personnel to capitalise on the ‘golden hour’ while probing such cases. The gap between the occurrence of the crime and response after registration of the case is referred to as the golden hour. “The speed with which information, facts, allegations and rumours travel is very fast. Our response must match this speed. We should improve the expertise to solve the cyber crimes, which are very complex in nature,” director general of police Abhay recently said while addressing the police personnel at an event.

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