Con men siphoning off tsunami aid

Agence France Presse

Chennai, January 24:

Con artists are using the Internet to siphon money for tsunami relief by mass mailing pleas worldwide from fictional tsunami survivors begging for assistance, cyber crime analysts in India said today. A few days after the December 26 disaster that killed more than 227,000 people, dozens of con artists cropped up sending out messages for donations via mobile phones, posting fraudulent e-mails seeking donations and phishing Web sites to direct donors to give them money, the analysts said.

“Some of them even pretended to be donors themselves. It’s a huge problem,” says Na Vijayashankar, a cyber law consultant in India.