FIA Cybercrime circle has made more arrests in its crackdown against the mafia groups in Karachi & Gujranwala involved in illegal activities of stealing passport identities for mobile registration.
Earlier, a group was also arrested from Rawalpindi. The arrested gangs shown on electronic media were involved in stealing passport information of overseas Pakistanis and used to register smuggled and blocked phones against them.
One of the gang included a travel agency from Karachi, which used the passport data of their passengers and the data was sold to the mobile shopkeepers. It has been learned that PTA has also provided a list of 1326 people, whose passport data has been used in this immoral and illegal activity. FIA has warned travel agents, shopkeepers and consumers against the use of such data for the registration of illegal or blocked phones. They have warned of serious consequences, that includes 7 years of imprisonment and fine or both as per PECA rules. All such illegally registered phones can be traced back by FIA.
It has also been reported that PTA and FIA are also taking other preventive measures against the illegal IMEI registration. These steps are being taken against the miscreants involved in stealing the passport information in a systematic way, and activating the smuggled phones by using the stolen passport data or cloning the mobile phones. PTA and FIA have received complaints that when they try to register their phone via PTA’s legitimate process, they get the message thatyour passport has already been usedand a request to pay the tax.
In Gujranwala, a smugglers group consisted of five people and stole passport information and used the data to register the smuggled smartphones. Almost 5,000 passport information of umrah performers was being illegally used. Media reports disclosed that the travel agent and shopkeepers were both involved in this criminal activity.