Cybercrimes up by 20% in 1st quarter of 2024

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THE Philippine National Police (PNP) has noted a significant increase in cybercrime cases in the country in the first quarter of 2024, PNP Chief General Rommel Marbil said Monday, July 1, 2024.

In a statement, Marbil said cybercrime cases went up by 21.84 percent from January to March as compared to the same period in 2023.

He said scams related to online selling and investment and credit card fraud top these cybercrime cases, which is attributed to the increased online activity, sophisticated cybercrime tactics, and the public’s lack of awareness.

Marbil vowed intensified drive against cybercrimes, allocating more resources and enhancing capabilities to combat the growing threat of cyber-related offenses.

He also urged the public, particularly victims of cybercrime, to immediately seek police assistance.

“Your safety is our priority, and your feedback is essential in helping us improve our services. Together, we can build a safer and more secure community,” said Marbil.

Addressing cybercrimes is among the priorities of Marbil under his leadership.

The PNP earlier established cyber security desks in all police stations in the light of the increase of cybercrime cases in the country.

He also raised the need to invest in Artificial Intelligence technology and other capacity to improve efforts against cybercrimes including manpower.

He noted the need for the police’s operations and efforts to keep up with the generational changes especially in technology.

Meanwhile, Marbil reminded all police personnel that moonlighting is strictly prohibited in a bid to ensure that they are always available to respond promptly to citizens’ complaints and emergencies.

“Our duty is to ensure the safety of our citizens. Police must be available at all times to address the needs and concerns of the public. By prohibiting moonlighting, we are reinforcing our commitment to quick and efficient response to any situation,” Marbil said.

“Your safety is our priority, and your feedback is essential in helping us improve our services. Together, we can build a safer and more secure community,” he added.

The top cop earlier reiterated that 85 percent of the PNP force should be dedicated to field duties for the conduct of checkpoints and patrols while “cyber cops” focus on internet crimes.

Marbil encouraged the public to report any police abuse and reach out to the PNP through these hotlines: PNP Hotline: 117 or 911, Anti-Cybercrime Group: (02) 414-1560 and Internal Affairs Service: (02) 723-0401 to 20. (TPM/SunStar Philippines)

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