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A Harare man in his 40s, let’s call him “David,” met a woman online calling herself “Mary.” David, who lived in Harare, was in a bad marriage. Mary said she was a businesswoman and a Christian, and wooed him. “He was saying all the right things at, the right time,” David later told the CID.
“She was interested in me. She was interested in getting to know me better. She was very positive, and I felt like there was a real connection there.” Early on, Mary told him she was having some problems with her business and needed money. She wanted to help.
From 2016 to 2017, she sent him US$20 000 often in installments of a few thousand dollars at a time, always hoping and expecting to get paid back. After He alerted the CID, the person who played the character of Mary has not been identified.
Cybercrime is defined as a crime in which a computer is the object of the crime (hacking, phishing, spamming) or is used as a tool to commit an offense (child pornography, hate crimes). Cybercriminals may use computer technology to access personal information, business trade secrets or use the internet for exploitive or malicious purposes. Criminals can also use computers for communication and document or data storage. Criminals who perform these illegal activities are often referred to as hackers.
The high number of cyber-related crimes in the county has prompted The Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) to create a cyber lab to fight crime. Scammers lure in victims by tricking them into believing that their loved ones are in dire financial trouble, or that they are seriously ill abroad and need money for treatment.
C.I.D Commercial Crimes division will tomorrow be hosting a fundraising dinner raising money for a cyber lab.
”We downplay the effects of cybercrime on our economy yet it is one crime that is growing faster than any other because of the advent of plastic money, social media use, and technological advancements. Join in the fight against cybercrime.” ZRP said.
More research on cybercrime could help deepen scholars’ and investigators’ understandings of how these social science problems play out online.