Chinese and Pakistani sextortion gangs target Bhopalites

Scamsters add target persons to several groups on instant messaging platforms, where obscene content is distributed and titillating video calls are made to lure them

Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): If receiving phone calls or messages with numbers beginning with +86 or +92, it is a red signal as the ISD codes belong to China and Pakistan, respectively, and cyber crooks based in these countries have begun luring the residents of Bhopal into sextortion trap.

Cybercrime officials said that in the past one month, almost 21 such cases have been reported, in which several people have fallen prey to sextortion trap and lost Rs 8 lakh.

Senior officials of the cyber crime wing said after scores of advisories were issued by the police, the scamsters have turned apprehensive and changed their modus operandi. Almost a year and a half after sextortion scam had hit a hiatus, it has made a comeback, this time with the crooks based overseas.

The officials continued by saying that the crooks based in Pakistan and China contact the target person through instant messaging applications and a photo of a girl with short clothes appears in their display picture. Some of the victims assume it to genuine and begin talking to them. They also indulge in obscene video calls with them, during which their participation in the video call is recorded by the crooks.

After making sundry video calls, the crooks then add the target person to other groups on the application and lure them further to indulge into video calls with other females added to the group. The ones who end up doing so fall prey to sextortion by multiple scammers and end up losing their money when the scammer threatens to propagate their video online.

District cyber crime cell ACP Sujeet Tiwari told Free Press that recently, a 22-year-old law student from Bhopal fell prey to sextortion and ended up losing Rs 2 lakh. He further said avoiding messages and calls from unknown numbers, especially those possessing the country code +86 and +92 is the only way out to dodge the frauds.

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