The Public Relations Officer for the Central Regional Police command, Supt. Irene Serwaa Oppong, has advised Ghanaian women to be cyber security conscious to avoid falling victim to the activities of cybercriminals.
According to her, with the advancement and development of technology in the country, cybercriminals had taken undue advantage of the cyberspace to embark on fraudulent activities.
Supt. Irene Oppong, who gave the advice, was speaking at the 2023 International Women’s Day Celebration organised by the Centre for Gender Research, Advocacy and Documentation (CEGRAD) of University of Cape Coast.
This year’s theme was “DigitALL: Innovation and Technology for Gender Equality”.
She mentioned romance fraud, momo fraud, online rent, child ponography, and extortion as some of the cyber frauds in Ghana.
DSP Irene Serwaa Oppong speaking at the event
She admonished women and girls to desist from taking nude pictures and videos of themselves since they could end up being leaked on the Internet.
Supt. Oppong also urged parents to constantly monitor their children’s activities on the Internet to ensure that they were not doing things that could adversely affect their safety and future.
She counseled internet users to use different passwords for their online activities.
Supt. Oppong indicated that the Police had noticed the re-emergence of a common type of mobile money fraud.
According to her, the fraudsters begin by sending SMS notifications to the phones of targeted victims claiming they (victims) had been credited with money for winning a promotion or raffle.
She cautioned women not to entertain any phone conversations with fraudsters and under no circumstance should they share their mobile money PIN with anyone.
Supt. Oppong told the public to report cybercrimes to the Cyber Crime Unit of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service for expeditious action. She also advised victims to contact the unit for counseling services.
The Director of CEGRAD, Dr. Georgina Yaa Oduro, in her welcome address, showered praises on women on the occasion of International Women’s Day.
According to her, the Day was set aside by the United Nations in 1975 to recognise and celebrate the economic, political and social achievements of women globally.
Director of CEGRAD-UCC, Dr. Georgina Yaa Oduro, delivering her welcome address
She said the Day recognises women and girls championing the advancement of transformative technology and digital education while exploring the impact of the digital gender gap on widening economic and social inequalities across the world.
The Director noted that women mostly bore the brunt of cyber bullying in the society.
The Pro Vice-Chancellor, Prof Rosemond Boohene, in a brief remark read on her behalf by the Dean of the School of Graduate Studies, Prof. Sarah Darkwah, stated that the theme for the celebration was apt as it sought to throw light on the role of innovative technology in promoting gender equality as well as meeting the health and developmental needs of women and girls.
She said gender equality was pre-requisite for discovering human resource potentials in society for sustainable development.
At the ceremony, there was a panel discussion on the topic: "Keeping Safe whilst enjoying the benefit of Digital Technology,"
The panelists called for the introduction of a cyber-course at the basic level to arm students with information about the activities of cybercriminals.
Source: Documentation and Information Section-UCC