Ugandans lost a total of shs15.9 billion to fraudsters through cybercrime, the annual police crime report for the year 2020 has indicated.
The report released on Monday also indicated that of the shs15.9 billion, only shs7.7 million was recovered by police.
“The cases are always reported when the money is already stolen and taken by fraudsters,” the Police Director for Criminal Investigations, AIGP Grace Akullo said on Monday.
According to the report, the sh15.9 billion lost to fraudsters was in the 248 cases reported in 2020, which was a 3.2% increase from what was reported the previous year.
In October last year, over shs11 billion which was part of MTN and Airtel mobile money system was stolen from Bank of Africa and Stanbic bank after hacking into the system.
The annual police crime report for 2020 has also indicated that the fraudulent transaction after hacking into the Pegasus Technologies system saw a total of 1632 sim cards for both Airtel and MTN used to steal the shs11 billion in mobile money.
The report also indicated that whereas nine suspects were arrested and charged in courts of law, investigations into the fraud still continue.
Police said 59 cases of electronic fraud were registered last year.
The report also indicated that a total of 345 land fraud cases were reported to police last year in which shs4.1 billion was lost as a result of obtaining money by false pretenses and only shs220 million was recovered.
“Much as there was a decrease in the volume of crimes reported in 2020, the fight against crime still remains a challenge. Provision of adequate resources to all the criminal justice chain will go a long way in enabling the relevant criminal justice actors handle their mandate effectively and efficiently since they are chain-linked,”Akullo said.
She noted that fighting crime is not only the role of Police but rather concerted efforts are required from all citizens and stakeholders.