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Cyber cell arrests man for hacking, blackmailing several women

A city businessman fell victim to ‘Man In Middle Attack’ — a type of hacking — on May 26 and Rs 2.90 crore was syphoned off from his account to another within minutes without his permission. Thanks to the city cybercrime cell’s quick action, the money was retrieved from a bank in China.

The account is registered in the name of a fraudster who operates primarily as an email hacker.

The businessman approached police on May 26 with his complaint application, stating that he had entered into an agreement with a Chinese firm on April 27 and had placed an order to procure machinery from the company. The firm had demanded some advance from him and he was in touch with its officials through emails.

Man in the middle method of cyber attack involves a hacker who secretly relays and possibly alters the communication between two parties who believe they are directly communicating with each other.

During their investigation, the cyber cell found that the man had hacked into the social media accounts of six other women in the city and blackmailed them. The accused reportedly threatened the women of posting morphed illicit images of them on their social media accounts.

A team headed by deputy commissioner of police (cyber & economics) Sudhir Hiremath and inspectors Jayram Paigude and Manisha Zende acted promptly in the case and managed to recover the lost money. No case was registered, though.

Police inspector of the cyber crime cell, Manisha Zende, told Mirror, “A very renowned company from Hinjawadi, which makes headlights for various vehicles, had been engaged in an email conversation with a China-based company for ordering raw materials on April 27 this year. The deal had been finalised between finance and purchase officials on both sides. The Chinese company had sent an email to the Indian company in which they had requested the transfer of an advance amount and had also asked that the rest of the money be sent across after the delivery.”

The man arrested was identified as Krushna Baliram Fadd, a resident of Jagdish Khanawalkar chawl in Panvel region of Raigad.