Hyderabad: Once a victim of a phishing attack, a techie resorted to the same offence to extort money by impersonating a woman. The Rachakonda cyber crime police on Sunday arrested the accused who sent a forged link to steal the credentials of a woman on Facebook and collected Rs 18,000 from the latter’s friends.
Sirisha (name chan-ged) from Saroornagar was informed by her friend about a message on Facebook saying that she had met with a road accident and wanted money urgently to meet medical expenses.
Sirisha tried to log into her FB profile to check the claims, but she found her password changed and could not recover it. She lodged a complaint with the cyber crime police.
During investigation, the police identified the person using Sirisha’s social media profile as Bathula Venkateshwarlu, 24, and nabbed him. Venkateshwarlu, a resident of Jillelaguda in Balapur, has been working as a software engineer at a graphic designing firm in Madhapur.
On questioning him, the police found that in September Venkatesh-warlu had sent a phishing link to Sirisha on FB Messenger. She opened the link and filled her credentials and logged into her account.
A few days later, Venkateshwarlu changed the password, phone number and recovery email of the profile and started using it to extort money.
“Venkateshwarlu impersonated the woman and sent messages to her FB friends informing that she had met with an accident and wanted money to meet medical expenses. Believing the messages, several persons sent money into the bank account details provided,” said a police official. Police is looking for other victims.
Sources close to the police said that the police also found that Venkateshwarlu had himself once fallen into the trap of cyber fraudsters through fishing and lost money. He then wanted to try the same on others and earn some money.
The police has advised users to have a two-step security verification for logging in to prevent cyber fraudsters from logging into social profiles, the second step of the process being an OTP/verification code sent to the phone for every login....