Online scams rose by more than 400 per cent in the first six months of this year

Posed photo of a woman working on a laptop computer. Online scams rose sharply in the first six months of the year, according to crime statistics released by the police on Wednesday. -- PHOTO: ST FILE
Posed photo of a woman working on a laptop computer. Online scams rose sharply in the first six months of the year, according to crime statistics released by the police on Wednesday. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - WITH e-commerce on the rise, criminals also have their eye on cyberspace.

Online scams rose sharply in the first six months of the year, according to crime statistics released by the police on Wednesday.

Housebreaking, theft and related crimes are at a 10-year low.

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Crime cases in 1st half of 2014

  1st half 2013 1st half 2014 Change % Change
Theft and related crimes 8,671 8,338 -333 -3.8
Miscellaneous crimes 2,102 2,113 +11 +0.5
Crimes against persons 1,939 2,029 +90 +4.6
Commercial crimes 1,817 2,284 +467 +25.7
Housebreaking and related crimes 276 175 -101 -36.6
Violent/serious property crimes 201 280 +79 +39.3
Overall 15,006 15,219 +213 +1.4

Source: Singapore Police Force

Straits Times Graphic: Lin Zhaowei

 

Police have highlighted cheating involving e-commerce, cyber-extortion, serious hurt and rape as its key crime concerns this year.

From January to June, cheating involving e-commerce rose to 504 cases, from 96 cases reported in the same period last year.

This includes duping people into making multiple payments, and internet love scams - where victims are persuaded to transfer money overseas to foreign men they meet and fall for online.

Victims were cheated of at least $3.1 million in 82 internet love scam case in the first half of this year.

Unlicensed moneylending and harassment cases dropped by 31.6 per cent, with 3,235 cases compared to last year.

Said the Deputy Director of the Criminal Investigation Department, Assistant Commissioner of Police Florence Chua: "The tough laws... coupled with the concerted effort by the police and strong community support, have enabled us to continue to make good progress in tackling the loansharking problem in Singapore.

"Police will continue to work closely with our partners and relevant stakeholders to explore ways to tackle the loansharking problem upstream."

 

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