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Saturday, 12 September 2015

Is technology to blame for rise in blackmailing cases?

Technology makes our lives easier. Today people have so many opportunities to learn and to connect by using it. But as each advantage comes with a potential cost, advanced technology also has its negative effect on society. Majority of the Saudis have started using high tech gadgets for example smart phones, iPods, laptops and tablets. An increase in the willingness and ability of buyers to purchase these devices has been raised to the record level. And this jump up in the trend to purchase these devices has been broadly reported and noticed in the regional media. It is reported in Al-Riyadh daily newspaper that males are using this technology in a negative sense and use different illegal method to black mail females involving threats of physical harm, illegal sexual relations or purposes of taking the person's money or property.



Selling a cell phone is a normal thing but it becomes complicated and terrible for women if she forgot to erase her personal photographs or videos before selling her mobile. Black mailers often buy these second hand phones just for the sake of fulfilling their cheap desires. And if they found any photo in the cell phone, then they start threatening the woman. They terrorize her that they would put the photographs or videos on different websites on internet if the victim does not fulfill their desires. Women who are victims of black mailing can seek help from the Commission which is for the encouragement of good values and deterrence of Vice (Haia). Commission members arranging the whole set up and convince the victim to meet the black mailer and then without any delay commission would take him into custody.



An assistant professor of comparative Islamic jurisprudence Dr. Muhammad Al-Omran believed that the exploitation of the technological advancement is the cause of increasing blackmailing crimes in the society. And mostly women are the victims in these cases. In Islamic Shariah law, the punishments for these blackmailers are very strict and harsh. The victim would suffer a harsh social and psychological damage because of these blackmailers’ dreadful acts and terrible cost paid by the victim and her family.   The blackmailing is a crime and it is considered as a severe offence. It is not like that some girls easily become victim to these wicked criminal who take advantage of their modesty and weakness. According to the professor Al-Omran Women should take proper measures before giving their cell phones for repair or before selling their mobiles. She should not trust any technician and erase all the personal photos or videos before giving it to them for repairing. Women should realize that by posting pictures on instagram, facebook or other social sites is like putting one’s self into danger or increasing the chances to fall into the trap of the blackmailers and exposes their modesty because of the privacy violations of these sites.


According to an advocate Zamil Al-Rakadh, blackmailing is a crime of severe nature and should be handled with circumspectly and carefully. The finding should be based on the particulars and details available because women are not straightaway involved in some cases. He further added that blackmailing categorized as a sinful and adulterated case which include abduction, sexual abuse, kidnapping and adultery. While discussing about the procedure of the case, Al-Rikadh said that the case is mostly filed by the Commission called Haia. After filing the case, the commission refers it to the Investigation department and Public Prosecution. Lawyer Al-Rikadh explained that the punishment the blackmailer would face in this case is one year imprisonment or with fine which would be about 50,000 Saudi Riyal or with both. He said that women were at fault in some cases where they willingly trust a man and having illegal sexual relation with him. These are the careless actions of women which increase the blackmailing cases in the society day by day.


Lawyer Abdul-Aziz Al-Shabrami is in the favor of publishing names of the blackmailers so they would face humiliation publicly. It would be the lesson for the other men so they would think twice before doing a crime like that. But this may also negatively affect the family of the blackmailer and their position in the society.  Professor Dr. Al-Omran demanded from the parents to raise their children according to the teaching of Islam. He said that parents should give enough confidence to their children that they become truthful and would not hide anything from them. The awareness about the threats of black mail should teach firstly in Educational institution, mosques and on the media. They should educate the girls the ways of avoiding these threats.


Educational institution, mosques and the media should alert girls about the jeopardy of blackmail and the preventive measures that they should take to stay safe from it. A woman who is a victim of blackmailing should realize that complaining it to the authorities or bringing their problem into the notice of the officials would diminish the negative impact and ease their problem. Turki Al-Shilayel, who is the president of Haia in Riyadh, insisted blackmail victims that they should not surrender to the demands of the blackmailer. He further said that as an alternative, they should call this number (0114908666) to inform and give details about their blackmailer. It is a toll free number. He said that not only men are involved in the crime of black mailing but there are also cases where men were the victims of blackmailing and women were used them for their desires. And there are also the cases where a woman was blackmailing the other woman. Al-Shilayel said that there is a special unit setup only to deal with the blackmail cases.
Source: Saudi Gazette

Technological Information about KSA
  1. 6 Years Jail, 150 Lashes for Blackmailing a Young Woman
  2. HAIA arrested the blackmailer with inappropriate pictures of Girls
  3. Saudi Computer is in Top 10 Most Powerful Computers of the World
  4. Dos and Don'ts of Online Shopping in Saudi Arabia
  5. Pros and Cons of Anonymous Surfing in Saudi Arabia

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