Gurugram: Cyber thugs put man under 'digital arrest', extort Rs 2 lakh

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Gurugram, Jun 11 (PTI) A man was allegedly put under "digital arrest" and Rs 2 lakh were extorted from him by cyber thugs, who falsely accused him of being involved in a money laundering case, police here said on Tuesday.

Rajeev Kumar, a resident of Surya Vihar in sector 9, appeared to have become the victim of a cyber scam that typically involves fraudsters posing as "officers" from police or any other law enforcement agencies with the aim of extortion.

These interactions often happen via video calls, where the victims are sometimes placed under "digital arrest" by the imposter "officers", who ask them to remain in front of the camera on their device.

According to the complaint filed by Kumar, he received an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) call on the morning of May 25. The caller claimed they would block Kumar's phone numbers linked with his Aadhar card.

Kumar, in his complaint to the cyber west police station, said that he later received a call on WhatsApp from someone, who claimed to an officer from the Mumbai Police.

This person "accused me of being involved in a money laundering case involving transactions of around Rs 6 crore and claimed that they found my Canara Bank debit card at the house of someone named Naresh Goel, who they said is the head of this money laundering scam," Kumar said.

"During this video call, they interrogated me for three hours, threatening to send police to my house if I did not comply," he added.

Kumar said he was scared and agreed to comply, enduring a three-hour interrogation.

"I was nervous and shocked. After talking to me for two hours, they asked me to send money to a specified account to verify if my account was fraudulent. I sent Rs 2 lakh to the account of Maa Parwati Tiles and Marbles at the IndusInd Bank branch in Jagdishpur, Bihar. They were keen on investigating my entire account," he stated in the complaint.

Following the complaint, an FIR was registered under sections 419 (cheating by impersonation) and 420 (cheating) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) at cyber crime west police station on Sunday, a senior police officer said, adding they are trying to identify the accused. PTI COR BHJ BHJ

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