Five-member gang held for hacking, selling citizens’ data – Pakistan | #cybersecurity | #cyberattack

PESHAWAR: The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has arrested a five-member gang for hacking and selling private data of citizens.

An FIA official said the arrests were made by the cybercrime reporting centre Peshawar and that the gang had formed a countrywide network to deal in private data of citizens.

He said the accused were involved in hacking, purchase and sale of call detail records, ownership and Nadra records via WhatsApp groups.

He said acting on a tip-off FIA raided a restaurant on the Ring Road and arrested the gang members.

He said initial examination of the mobile phones seized from the accused revealed that CDR, ownerships and Nadra records were being sold on WhatsApp.

He said one of the accused, Imran Mehmood Butt, was using a UK number and mobile money services in the name of Razia Mai, Jamala Bibi and Amera Bibi to receive money.

He said another accused, Shoaib Nawaz, admitted during interrogation that he had hacked email accounts of officers of the Punjab police to gain access to data from mobile companies.

The official said after permission from the competent authority, an FIR under sections 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 17 of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act, 2016, and sections 109, 419, 420 of the Pakistan Penal Code was registered against Shoaib Nawaz.

The official identified the other co-accused as Samiullah, Ehsanullah and Humayun Khurshid.

He said Samiullah revealed that he was creator of different WhatsApp groups through which he was selling ownership details, CDR, location against mobile numbers and Nadra details.

The initial examination into the mobile phone seized from Imran Mehmood Butt revealed that he was involved in selling location data against mobile numbers on WhatsApp.

During initial examination of the mobile phone seized from Ehsanullah, it was revealed that he was selling ownership, CDR, location against mobile numbers, while analysis of phones seized from Humayun Khurshid showed that he sold CDR and Nadra details via WhatsApp.

Published in Dawn, January 9th, 2021

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