Cybercrime Wing of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has made significant strides in combating cybercrime, with the recent arrest of nine individuals involved in a loan app scam. The suspects were apprehended on Friday, following operations conducted along Saidpur Road.
According to an FIA spokesperson, these individuals were part of a larger group that exploited loan app users by blackmailing them. The suspects were allegedly part of a loan app mafia, which targeted people who had borrowed money through their platform. The FIA is currently investigating 19 other potential culprits linked to this case.
Inspector Badar Munir led the operation, during which several offices associated with the fraudulent company were shut down. These offices, located within a business complex, were equipped with designated sections for making threatening calls to the victims. These sections, labeled D-0, D-1, D-2, DS-1, DS-2, and DS-3, each had specific duties.
The arrested individuals were reportedly responsible for making between 100 and 150 calls daily to borrowers, as well as their friends and relatives. The loan apps were used to access users’ private data, including personal photos and contacts, which were then used to harass the victims.
During the operation, the FIA seized numerous items, including documents, computers, laptops, and SIM cards. The suspects are currently in custody, and further investigations are ongoing. More raids are being planned to apprehend the remaining blackmailers.
This crackdown follows a tragic incident involving Muhammad Masood, a 42-year-old man who committed suicide due to the immense pressure and threats from the loan app mafia. Masood initially borrowed Rs. 13,000, but his debt skyrocketed to over Rs. 700,000 due to missed repayments and accumulating interest. The criminals threatened to leak his private data, leading to his untimely death.
In response to Masood’s suicide, a three-member FIA team collected his mobile phone for investigation. They also examined his email communications, including those with the digital lender, and took statements from his wife and brother.
Meanwhile, a similar case has been reported in Karachi, where a citizen lodged a complaint about online loan app blackmail with the FIA’s Cybercrime unit. However, no action has been reported so far.
The FIA continues its efforts to combat such cybercrimes, ensuring the safety and security of citizens in the digital space.