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    Feb 11, 2016

    Cybercrime on the rise since 2013

    A RISE in online offences is expected to be revealed when police release their annual crime statistics tomorrow.

    The Ministry of Home Affairs yesterday said online crime has been on the rise since 2013. Last August, mid-year police statistics showed that credit-for-sex cases, e-commerce cheating and Internet love scams contributed to an overall rise in crime.

    There were 66 per cent more e-commerce cheating cases in the first half of last year, compared to the same period in 2014.

    Some 627 credit-for-sex cases - a trend which emerged in the second half of last year - were recorded in the first half of 2015, with victims cheated of about $1.6 million. In the second half of 2014, there were just 66.

    The scams involve men being asked by women on social-media platforms to buy gift cards and online credits in return for sexual services which the men do not get.

    Internet love scams also went up by more than 50 per cent - from 92 cases in the first half of 2014, to 141 in the same period in 2015 - with victims handing over some $3.8 million.

    A report by security firm Norton released in November last year showed that victims of cybercrime here lost an average of $545 each in the past year, higher than the global average of US$358 (S$500).