Adaptation by public of online platforms not just to shop for articles but also for brides and grooms, has fostered may side effects – online matrimonial scams just being one of them.These include creating a false profile; luring victims by pretending to be single; or that divorce was just around the corner; creating false particulars on various fronts including marital status; education; current employment, etc.,
Case 1: A well educated professional was duped and cheated out of Rs.1.01 Crores after falling prey to online scam on a Matrimonial website. The victim was duped by two Nigeria men, who set up a fake Matrimonial profile with false information. The Accused in this case would use job search website in order to predict potential targets. The Accused would use false information to create an impressive online profile and contacted the victim. After communicating on various social media websites and on messaging apps, the Accused promised to marry the Victim and over a period of time, convinced her to deposit Rs.1.01 Crores into 7 different bank accounts.
Case 2: A married man with wife and children creates a fake profile on a popular matrimonial site of a single medical doctor. In this instance the family did a background check which exposed the fraudster.
Cases such as these abound with many single women falling prey. The criminals use the vulnerability of victims and also social engineering to lure their victims. in some instances the victims may discover the fraud after getting into relationships or parting with money. The blackmail and extortion through these frauds cause severe damage to victims, who are also reluctant to come forward with their complaints, as they fear being judged for their actions or for their mistake of falling prey. Such inaction merely emboldens these criminals to commit such crimes on more victims, as they merely get emboldened with such inaction.
Fraudsters such as these can be tracked and brought to book through Criminal cases registered under sections including Section 420 and / or 416 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (“IPC”) and / or under Section 66C and / or Section 66D of the Information Technology Act, 2000 (as amended) (“IT Act”), depending on the facts and circumstances of the case. These are merely indicative provisions and further sections may be applicable depending on the modus adapted including possibly of rape under Sections 376 to 376E IPC.
Victims of online fraud may file their complaints online on cybercrime.gov.in. Seek justice and ensure that criminals do not harm you or others. Be A Cyber Saathi!
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