CYBER FRAUD A crime without borders

FIJI, as one of the South Pacific’s most developed economies, is fast becoming a prime target for “cyber thieves” across the Globe. According to the Fiji Intelligence Unit (FIU), in just two years, 2013 to 2015, Fijian companies and individuals have lost over US$780,000 to cyber fraud. And the FIU’s Director, Razim Buksh, has admitted it is almost near impossible to trace cyber criminals who “mask” their Internet Protocol (IP) addresses.

An IP address is a numerical label which identifies devices such as computers and can be used to track the user’s location when they log into the Internet. Addressing the recent 17th Attorney General’s Conference in Fiji, Buksh issued a wake-up call to all Fijians and especially to business houses about the growing global problem of cyber fraud which is diverting funds from legitimate economies and undermining the profitability of lawful businesses.

The FIU says cyber fraud affects countries, communities and individuals and removes large amounts of money from the global and national economies which could otherwise be used to fund services, roads, hospitals and schools. Reminding his audience that global use of electronic “smart devices” to transact business is increasing exponentially, Buksh sounded the warning that such devices were “vulnerable” and open to abuse by international criminals.

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