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450% rise in Assam cyber crime

Guwahati, July 2: There has been a phenomenal rise in the number of cyber crime cases registered in Assam, according to the latest figures released by the National Crime Records Bureau.

The NCRB report, titled Crime in India, 2013, which was released on Monday, shows that the number of cyber crime cases in Assam registered under the provisions of Information and Technology Act, 2000, leapfrogged from 28 in 2012 to 154 in 2013, an increase of a whopping 450 per cent.

In terms of percentage increase of cyber crime cases, Assam ranked second among the states in the country, only behind Uttarakhand.

Of the 154 cases registered in the state last year, 111 cases were registered under Section 67 of IT Act, which relates to obscene publication/transmission in electronic form.

The remaining cases were registered under Section 66 (1) of the IT Act, which pertains to hacking computer systems causing loss/damage to computer resource/utility.

Two persons were arrested last year in connection with cyber crime cases in Assam.

Both were in the age group of 18-30 years, the report said.

Not a single case of cyber crime was registered in Mizoram and Nagaland in 2012 and 2013, the report said. Arunachal Pradesh witnessed a decline in cyber crime cases from 12 in 2012 to 10 in 2013. In Tripura, the number of cyber crime cases registered remained unchanged in 2012 and 2013 at 14.

Assam additional director-general of police (CID) Mukesh Sahay said greater Internet penetration was one of the reasons for the increase in cyber crimes in the state.

“With the rising popularity of social networking sites, there has also been an increase in the cases of defamation on those sites,” Sahay told The Telegraph.

“We have received a number of cases related to defamation, threats and personal attacks made through social media,” he said.

“There has also been a rise in cases of financial frauds in cyberspace, which has contributed to the increase in total number of cyber crime cases,” he added. Sahay said a majority of these financial frauds were online banking frauds and credit cards frauds.

Last year, an official of the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) Ltd at Duliajan had lodged a police complaint after Rs 4 lakh was siphoned off by unidentified criminals from his bank account at SBI’s Dispur branch by hacking into his netbanking account.

“While there has been an increase in cyber crime cases, we have also detected and solved many such cases,” Sahay said.

On June 12, CID sleuths had arrested two youths — Jiaur Rahman, 25, and Illias Rahman, 23, — on charges of fraudulently withdrawing lakhs of rupees from bank accounts of different persons through Internet banking.

“Some people also misuse the Internet and social media for rumour-mongering, which had led to thousands of people from the Northeast fleeing Bangalore in 2012,” he said.

To deal with the menace, the state police have set up a cyber crime cell and a cyber forensic laboratory at the CID headquarters.

“We provide regular training to police personnel from the districts on cyber crime investigation at the CID headquarters,” Sahay said.


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