Don’t fall for the low price, Malayalees too get cheated; Online fraud is on the rise in the UAE

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Dubai – Cases of losing money through online scams, including on social media, have increased. Many people, including the Malayalis, have already lost money. Many people lost money while ordering various types of goods and food items of leading brands after seeing the low prices. With the advent of Ramadan, the number of such fraudulent offers has increased.

Scams are taking place in the name of food products by changing the dirhams to US dollars at the last minute while ordering after seeing the low price advertisement on Facebook and Instagram. They offer food products of even leading brands at almost half the price of established food outlets. Seeing this, those who jumped excitedly and placed orders lost money. Many people forget to check whether the charge is in dirhams or dollars when ordering through a bank card.

Bike for Dh22,000; 44,000 dirhams were struck

Online fraud is also done in the name of many other things. A Dubai misdemeanor court has sentenced two Africans to a month in prison and deportation from the UAE after they scammed two Africans by advertising bikes for sale online. They cheated the Gulf citizen. They have also been banned from using the internet.

The victim was lured through an online shopping portal and promised to sell the bike for 22,000 dirhams. The Gulf national was charged twice. According to court documents, the accused were committing online fraud by luring shoppers through shopping websites. The suspects tracked down the Gulf national, who was a frequent online shopper, and advertised the bike for sale of their interest through an advertisement published on a social network. Later, one of the accused contacted the victim through WhatsApp application and offered to sell the motorbike for 22,000 dirhams including shipping. Seeing the deal as lucrative, the Gulf citizen agreed to buy the item. The accused then started requesting different amounts to be transferred, which later amounted to Dh44,000. The Gulf national then realized that he had been duped. In his statement to the police and public prosecution, he said that he saw an advertisement of the motorcycle on a website and contacted the owner via WhatsApp to inquire about it. Both parties agreed on the price of the bike including the shipping fee. He said he had paid upfront and the seller started asking him for more, including insurance, customs fees and others. He said that the original price was Dh22,000 but he did not receive the bike despite paying Dh44,000 in various installments. Then the accused again demanded to pay another 5,000 dirhams to deliver the bike. With this, the Gulf citizen started suspecting the accused. But it was too late when he realized he had been scammed.

The court has not yet been able to take a statement from the second accused who is absconding. The court sentenced the accused to one month imprisonment and fine. A punitive measure was also taken to prevent their internet usage for six months from the execution of the sentence.