Express News Service
VIJAYAWADA: To kill boredom in time of lockdown due to the dreaded virus, denizens must guard themselves from falling prey to online cheats. Two city girls have learnt it the hard way and are trying to come clean. Shailaja (name changed) is a software professional, who recently came to the city, and has been working from home due to the COVID-19 lockdown.
With the police not allowing people to venture out of their homes, the only daughter of her parents Shailaja to kill boredom has not only watched movies online, but went a step ahead and registered herself on a dating app ‘Tinder’ and created an account without verifying it.
Not knowing that the dating app would bring unexpected troubles in her life, she uploaded her photos and accepted a request from a boy, who claimed to have created the profile for the same reason as Shailaja. The first week of their online friendship seemed to be normal, but the boy showed his true colours soon after she gave her number and made video calls to him.
The girl also shared personal photos with him, which worsened the situation as the boy started seeking sexual favours and money by blackmailing her. Afraid of her parents, Shailaja did not inform the incident either to her parents or friends and tried to handle the situation on her own, but her efforts went in vain. By the time, Shailaja realised that online dating apps are dangerous, she became a victim and is struggling to get out of the situation. Unfortunately, she did not lodge any complaint with the cybercrime police.
Similar is the case of another girl Deepika (name changed). She came across a website offering part-time jobs. In order to beat the loneliness and boredom, she registered for a job through the website and gave her details such as phone number and house address. Much to her shock, she received phone calls from various numbers seeking escort services. “I could not understand what’s going on in my life. I just enrolled for a job but instead, I’m receiving calls from men seeking escort services and using abusive language. I lodged a complaint with Andhra Pradesh Police Cyber Women Safety helpline and waiting for the response,” Deepika told TNIE.