Dubai cracks down on cybercrime

Published June 29th, 2015 - 09:23 GMT
Recent cases include busting a fake recruitment agency, money fraud, and manipulation of university degree certificates. (Shutterstock)
Recent cases include busting a fake recruitment agency, money fraud, and manipulation of university degree certificates. (Shutterstock)

Beware! You are in Dubai — That’s what criminals resorting to latest technology-assisted operations have to think when they indulge in violent activities. Though the challenge is too big for the law enforcement agencies, the Dubai Police are fully equipped to meet e-crimes, which are on the rise.

The Department of Evidence Department of Dubai Police has revealed details of three breakthrough cases that showcased the efficiency of the experts involved in cracking hi-tech criminal offences.

A coordinated effort by the department staff and Dubai Police led to the arrest of gangs involved in illegal recruitment; money fraud; and manipulation of university degree certificates.

Major Hamad Juma, director of the Department of Electronic Evidence at the General Department of Criminal Evidence and Criminology of the Dubai Police said that the engineers and computer programmers have high skills in dealing with different types of electronic evidences associated with different types of crime.

Major Hamad added that Dubai Police have been a pioneer in this area, and the electronic crime in the emirate will not find a foothold, thanks to engineers and experts efforts and technicians who have taken upon themselves the responsibility to protect the public from electronic crimes.

Major Juma stressed that crime in general has evolved and evidence used are not limited to sensory evidence such as fingerprinting or the DNA, but there are electronic evidence, which enables the investigating officers in bringing the culprits before justice.

Explaining the first case, Major Juma said the engineers of Electronic Evidence Department helped to arrest members of an African gang who established a fake employment company and website offering job opportunities in Dubai.

The police found that the gang gave an impression of a real recruitment company, collected copies of passports and residency from job seekers, and also took fees from them. However, the electronic evidence experts in Dubai Police handled the case quickly, and prevented the gang from cheating more people, and blocked the website. Major Juma added that they received lot of emails from victims who remitted fees to the recruitment agency for a job.

Regarding the money exchange fraud, Major Juma said that Dubai Police received a complaint from a money exchange office saying someone has hacked their website and transferring money to an account number outside the country. The forensic experts determined how the suspect managed to access the network of the exchange; the location where the suspect was sending the money to; and subsequently, the police stopped him.

The third case, was brought to the attention of Dubai Police by the university, which complained that some people tried to access its website, aiming at amending the grades of students in exchange for money. The electronic evidence experts detected the person who had penetrated into the university network and the Dubai Police moved quickly to the university. The police examined hundreds of applications of students who requested to amend their grades and the police did a full review of the website using the latest technology.

By Amira Agarib

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