Unidentified persons have allegedly hacked into the email account of senior bureaucrat Dr Shrikar Pardeshi, who has filed a complaint with the cyber crime cell of the city police. An offence under relevant sections of the Information Technology Act was registered with Bund Garden police.
Known for his major drive against illegal structures during his tenure as commissioner of PCMC, Pardeshi at present holds the charge of inspector-general of registration and controller of stamps.
Pardeshi’s Gmail account was hacked into in the early hours of April 17. The hackers then allegedly sent messages to various email addresses saved in his Gmail account.
The message circulated by the hackers reads: “I really hope this gets to you in time. I was involved in a robbery during my trip to Istanbul, Turkey. I was mugged, all my belongings including mobile phone and credit card were stolen. I asked my bank to cancel my cards and place hold on my account to avoid unauthorised access. I need your help in flying back home. Am cash-strapped at the moment. I’ve made contact with my bank but the best they could do was to send me a new card in the mail which will take 3-5 working days to arrive here. I need you to lend me some money to sort myself out of this predicament, I will pay back once I make it out of Turkey. Western Union is the fastest option to wire funds to me. Let me know if you need my details to effect a transfer… Regards, Shrikar Pardeshi”.
Pardeshi said he took immediate steps such as changing the password for the email account. Inspector Sushma Chavan of the cyber cell is investigating the case.
Ethical hacker Rohit Srivastava said, “People must use the two-factor authentication provided by some online services. Using this facility strengthens the security of an email account. Even if the password of the email account is compromised, nobody will be able to access it without entering the one-time password received on the cellphone of the account holder.”