Navi mum­bai Think twice be­fore ac­cept­ing friend re­quest

POLICE WARN Police regis­ter 114 cases of women tar­geted through so­cial me­dia; most cul­prits were ex-boyfriends, col­leagues or ac­quain­tances

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - NAVI MUMBAI - Pranab Jy­oti Bhuyan pranab. bhuyan@ hin­dus­tan­times. com

Twenty- year- old Anita Patil (name changed) was shocked when her el­der brother told her about a video be­ing cir­cu­lated on a What­sApp group in April last year.

Later, she learnt that the video was sent by man from Pan­vel with whom she was in a re­la­tion­ship till a few months ago.

The woman’s f ather was against the re­la­tion­ship and her mar­riage was fixed with some­one else.

This was revenge her exboyfriend took for the breakup and he was ar­rested.

Sources from t h e N av i Mum­bai cy­ber cell said there have been many other cases wherein dif­fer­ent so­cial net­work­ing sites and mes­sag­ing groups have been used to de­fame or abuse women in the past few months.

“We re gis­tered 114 such cases in 2015. A ma­jor­ity of the cases was of ex-boyfriends, col­leagues or ac­quain­tances abus­ing women. I n al­most ev­ery case, the ac­cused were ar­rested. This year, 20 such cases have been reg­is­tered,” said Prat­i­bha Shendge, police in­spec­tor from Navi Mum­bai cy­ber cell.

In sev­eral cases, cul­prits send mes­sages to women by creat­ing fake pro­files.

“They start mes­sag­ing one or sev­eral women from that pro­file and ex­press an in­ter­est in them. Af­ter be­friend­ing them, they ask for their phone num­bers. When they don’t get good re­sponse from other side, they start send­ing lewd mes­sages and ob­scene pho­to­graphs,” said a crime branch of­fi­cer.

“Women should be care­ful while ac­cept­ing friend re­quests and up­dat­ing their sta­tus on so­cial net­work­ing sites,” he said, adding that so­cial me­dia posts and mes­sages can never be deleted.

“Peo­ple think they can hide ev­i­dences by delet­ing chats. Even if they delete from their com­put­ers, we can re­trieve it from the hard disc, IP com­pany or from the ser­vice provider,” said Sangeeta Alphonso, se­nior police in­spec­tor of Nerul police sta­tion and for­mer head of Pune cy­ber cell.

“More im­por­tantly, if any­one de­stroys, deletes or al­ters in­for­ma­tion in a com­puter, he can be im­pris­on­ment for three years. Peo­ple are not au­tho­rised to use some­one else’s ac­count, sys­tem or in­ter­net with­out per­mis­sion,” she added.

I LLUSTRATION: SHRIKRISHNA PATKAR

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