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Beware of online scammers taking advantage of stay-at-home order

By Amina Wako April 16th, 2020 1 min read

The Directorate of Criminal Investigations has warned Kenyans of criminals taking advantage of the Covid-19 pandemic to scam people.

In a series of tweets, the DCI noted that there is a new crop of fraudsters selling non-existent products by circulating phishing emails.

“Members of the public are hereby warned that criminals are using the Covid-19 pandemic to scam them through the circulation of phishing emails purporting to sell non-existent items, and messages that are accompanied by links that purport to offer free goodies like data bundles, money, airtime among other things,” the DCI said.

According to the DCI, the scammers use captivating words then ask potential customers to click on a provided link, after which personal information is harvested.

“Such links have largely been found to be infected with malware that triggers mining of personal information, passwords, photos, contacts among other valuables that are subsequently used to extort, for cyberbullying, stealing of finances among other ills,” DCI added.

They have further asked those shopping online for sanitizers, PPE including facemasks and shields, to be on the lookout.

“In other instances, online shops purporting to sell sanitizers, PPE including face masks and shields, are on the rise. As payments for such items are being made, we urge more vigilance hence discourage the use of Free Wi-Fi, purchase of substandard items, fraud, particularly sharing financial and personal information,” the DCI cautioned.

Kenyans have also been asked to be keen when receiving home deliveries as some may be delivered by criminals who have treated the products with sleep inducers or drugs meant to stupefy, after which victims may lose their valuables.