Kerala Professionals Targeted in Online Scams: Police Report Surge in Cyber Fraud Cases

The Kerala police have sounded the alarm over a concerning trend: a surge in online scams targeting skilled professionals in the state, including doctors and IT experts. Official statistics paint a stark picture, revealing that over the past five months alone, more than 1,000 individuals have fallen victim to cyber fraud, with 55 doctors and 93 IT professionals among the casualties.

In response to this alarming uptick, the cyber division of the police has been ramping up efforts to raise awareness about online fraud through various channels. From social media campaigns to in-person sessions, authorities are leaving no stone unturned in their mission to educate the public about the perils of cybercrime. Moreover, professional associations, such as those representing doctors, have launched their own awareness initiatives to combat the scourge of online scams.

Despite these concerted efforts, there remains a significant gap in awareness, prompting authorities to seek additional support, including cooperation from financial institutions like the Reserve Bank. The magnitude of the problem is further underscored by estimates suggesting that Kerala loses a staggering minimum of Rs 15 crore each month to online fraud, with total losses reaching Rs 201 crore in the previous year alone.

While early intervention could potentially mitigate some of the financial losses, authorities lament the fact that less than 40 percent of victims come forward to report the fraud within the critical initial hours. The victims span a wide spectrum of professions, highlighting the indiscriminate nature of cyber fraud. From private employees and traders to homemakers and retirees, no demographic is immune to the threat.

As the battle against online scams intensifies, Kerala’s cyber division continues to urge vigilance and prompt reporting of suspicious activities. By fostering a culture of awareness and collaboration, authorities hope to stem the tide of cybercrime and safeguard the interests of the state’s professionals and citizens alike.

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