Extortion using false Polish IDs increases 30-fold in 2012
Extortion committed using fake IDs was valued at more than PLN 3 mln at 2012-end, up from PLN 128,000 y/y, Polish daily Rzeczpospolita wrote March 21.
“They usually know very well that the given bank account has a considerable balance,” head of the white-collar crime division at the Warsaw police force, Leszek Czaplicki, told the paper.
Criminals target both private individuals and companies.
With individuals, fraudsters steal their ID and use it to change the password to their bank account. The funds are then drained. In many cases bank accounts with deposits exceeding PLN 2 mln are targeted, and by the time the person realizes that they have been robbed the criminals are gone.
Channeling funds from companies is mostly carried out by forging an ID belonging to the targeted company’s CEO, and subsequently obtaining a duplicate of the CEO’s SIM card. Once this is attained, gaining access to their bank account does not pose a problem.
The number of extortion cases based on the use of fake IDs dropped from 114 in 2011 to 91 in 2012. This may indicate that fraudsters have become more adept at avoiding the justice system, according to Rzeczpospolita.