Cyber cheats use online recruitment sites to trap youth
Cyber criminals are increasingly preying upon vulnerable Omani women when they go online in search of employment opportunities.
An Observer investigation has unearthed instances of a handful of women falling victim to online predators, with at least one of them the target of financial and sexual blackmail by a fraudster who had stolen the identity of a policeman to target his prey.
According to Mubarak al Hadadi, General Manager and Chief Security Officer at Qnective, the victims are typically young women who are active on social media but generally gullible when targeted by cyber fraudsters.
Many become vulnerable when their online accounts are hacked and their personal information falls into the victims, experts point out.
In one shocking incident that recently came to light, an Omani college student who frequented various social media sites become the target of a prolonged and vicious cyber extortion scam.
‘RS’ (not her real initials) was contacted online by an individual who successfully hacked her personal accounts and discovered that she had visited some porn sites.
Masquerading as a police officer, having earlier stolen the identify of an official, the fraudster threatened to disclose her private details to her family in she did not cough up RO 5,000 in extortion money.
Anxious to safeguard her otherwise good name, RS borrowed the amount from a relative and dropped off the bribe at a pre-agreed location.