Cyber Crime On The Rise

by Ashanthi Warunasuriya

Cyber crime in Sri Lanka has seen a steady rise with scammers using online shopping to dupe customers.

Just last week a few people complained that they had made payments to purchase mobile phones via a popular online shopping website but found that they had been duped.

The mobile phones had been offered at below market rates and customers were told to make payments using the eZ Cash system.

Customers who paid an advance failed to receive the mobile phone and when the seller was contacted the phone was switched off.

The Police Criminal Investigations Department (CID) cyber crimes unit is tasked with investigating such crimes if a complaint is made.

An official of the unit said that such crimes can be traced as there is documentary evidence of the transaction.

The official said that when an eZ Cash transaction can be traced and anyone who feels they have been duped must file a complaint.

eZ Cash is a unique service available to the user even if they don’t have a bank account.

eZ Cash enables you to have a cash account in your mobile phone which you can top-up and carry out a range of cash transactions direct from your mobile phone. You can also withdraw money from your eZ cash account.

The CID said that under local laws a cyber crime is a punishable offence.

The Sri Lanka Computer Emergency Readiness Team (SLCERT) acts as the focal point for cyber security.

Senior Information Security Engineer of SLCERT Rohan Palliyaguru told The Sunday Leader that it has the mandate to advise the public who feel they have become victims of cyber crime.

In anticipation of increased cyber security incidents as Sri Lanka’s IT infrastructure grows, Sri Lanka CERT was established as Sri Lanka’s National CERT, by the ICT Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA). It is registered as a Private Limited Liability Company, and is a fully owned subsidiary of the ICTA.

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