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Offensive e-mails to ex-colleagues spell trouble

By Saibal Sen
Date: August 27, 2003

Cyber Crime KOLKATA: Goods looks and a well-paid job may draw a lot of admirers, many of whom can be male colleagues as well. But it can also land one in trouble especially if such colleagues retain their interests after switching offices.

Like most they lack the courage to speak their heart out but most likely they would make their intentions known, at times lewd innuendoes, through e-mail's sent from fictitious accounts. While in the same office, it is not impossible for one to know a colleagues e-mail ID.

They then keep sending such mails to their ID's even after the female colleagues have left the office. Initially, the woman might choose to ignore this but when such junk mails flood their inbox regularly, patience may fast run out.

The Detective Department's Cyber Crime Cell has been received three complaints, some informally, from female victims. While it does probe several such cases, including the series of mails once sent to a renowned actress' daughter, the growing trend among former colleagues to keep pestering their female counterparts has even left the cops worried.

"What these people do not understand, how easy it is to track down from where the e-mail generates. It is easy to know the IP address and then from the Internet Service Provider, the time and even the user machine," a senior officer said. "In these cases, since people who sent the e-mail were based in Kolkata, it is more easy to know who they are," the officer added.

After tracking them down they were summoned to Lalbazar. But it also put cops in a dilemma on how to go about such cases. "In most of these cases, the accused were from well-to-do families in plum posts. They generally fear any police action least this blots their careers," said an officer. "They were also not aware that such acts could invite police action," he said.

So the police decided to let them off with a warning. They were also counselled on the heavy fines and penalties such acts could lead them to. "They also gave us assurances that there would be no repeat of such acts in future," the officer added.

DC (DD-I) Soumen Mitra said these were personal probelms which went a bit too far. "We found no reason to presist with these since they promised never to repeat it," he said. He, however, said this does not mean that police would not take such complaints seriously, "These were trivial matters which the complaints were not keen enough to persist with if it ended. But if the probelm is acute there are enough provisions to book a person," he said.

Original article at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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