IMPACT OF COVID-19 PANDEMIC ON CRIME RATE

By Moksha Grover

The Covid-19 outbreak in Wuhan, China was recognized as a pandemic by World Health Organization (WHO). Today, the world is in the fight towards covid wide-ranging consequences. Pandemics have always changed the way human beings interact and covid pandemic is no exception in this case. People are facing collective forms of trauma due to health concerns, negativity caused by the pandemic, loss due to unemployment, false information surfing around social media etc.  Isolation and quarantine increased depression and anxiety among the people. Because of the side effects of the pandemic faced by the people domestic violence, homicide crimes, fraud and trafficking of medicinal products have increased significantly. While, due to lockdown crimes like theft, and robbery has shown a decline.

Domestic physical violence, abuse. Scared little caucasian girl, victim sitting close to a white wall with the shadow of an angry threatening mother with alcohol addiction. Awareness of social problems.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND HOMICIDES CRIME

While the covid pandemic has affected all types of crimes, some crimes have increased and some decreased. It has affected domestic violence and homicide crimes the most. Pandemic has added to the rise in domestic abuse and homicide crime. Due to economic reasons, the victim is forced to remain with the abuser. Some victims get quarantined with the abusers and are prone to sexual assault, partner violence, and child abuse. These people are also left without any access to services.

During the lockdown, many women were trapped in their houses and had to work all day and also become the victims of domestic violence by their husbands.  A study in New Delhi, India shows that by the second week of lockdown domestic violence cases rose from 116 in the first week to 257 in the final week in the month of March[1].  A study by researcher Priyanshi Chauhan found that “approximately 22.5% of married women, as compared to zero men and unmarried women, worked for more than 70 hours per week” during the lockdown[2]. The study also said unemployed women witnessed the highest increase of 30.5 percentage points for those who spent more than 70 hours per week on unpaid work[3].

COUNTERFEITING AND FRAUDS

Counterfeiting and fraud have increased a lot in this covid pandemic. High-demand products during the pandemic, mostly medical products are being counterfeited the most. Virus mitigating products such as face masks, virus test kits, PPT kits etc. worn by frontline workers and medical supplies used for treating COVID-19 patients were also counterfeited. In India, due to the shortage of remdisivir vaccines used for treating covid patients, criminals started selling fake remdisivir injections to people and in return took huge amounts of money from these people.

As the covid-19 pandemic led the way for online shopping, countering in online shopping also rose. Criminals began to exploit a greater use of social media as a medium for sales. The public trusts celebrities and influencers, promote a product and have faith in their recommendations. But this benefit was recognized by criminals and they recruited irresponsible influencers to engage in building interest in cheap and often dangerous fake goods. The covid pandemic is making a way for criminal counterfeiters and increasing the threat to businesses and consumers alike.

CYBERCRIMES

Owing to the shift of focus to a health crisis, cyber defence systems have been lowered. As a result, cybercriminals are attacking the computer networks and systems of individuals, businesses and even global organizations. Cybercriminals have created thousands of new websites for conducting spam campaigns or spreading malware. Various covid-19 maps and websites have been found embedded with malware, spyware and Trojans. Hospitals, medical centres and public institutions are being targeted by cybercriminals for ransomware attacks – since they are overwhelmed with the health crisis and cannot afford to be locked out of their systems, the criminals believe they are likely to pay the ransom[4].

TERRORIST ATTACKS

In comparison with the past, terrorist attacks have been reduced due to the global lockdown. In the past, when in 2013, the emergence of the Islamic state brought a new wave of attacks 2014 in cities around the world[5]. This wave of ISIS terror attacks seems to come to an end now. However, “Coronavirus denier movements” could contribute to the potential of violence since they attracted extremists from various ideological backgrounds[6]. In 2021, may a series of attacks in Afghanistan resulted in the deaths of 56 people[7]. Today, Afghanistan has been conquered by Talibans and now Talibans in association with Al-Qaeda have attacked Panjshir valley, a fight ongoing for two days[8]. Switzerland has warned of terror attacks on Covid vaccine sites[9].

THEORETICAL REASONS FOR THE IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON CRIME

Overall covid-19 pandemic has resulted in the reduction of crime rates. More stringent restrictions over movement in public spaces due to lockdown have resulted in large declines in crimes like theft, burglary and other types of crimes.  There are mainly 4 causes that have led to a significant decrease in crime rates due to pandemics.

First, restrictions on mobility and reduction in economic and social activities outside of the household leave the criminals with fewer opportunities. These restrictions have also reduced the number of assaults with deadly weapons, robberies, residential burglaries, shoplifting, and thefts as a consequence of a reduced interaction of people in the urban environment. Furthermore, this pandemic has also led to a reduction in the opportunities for potential victims to encounter the potential offender

Second, due to the fear of infection, many criminals have become hesitant to engage in criminal activities. This cause has shown a consequence in the reduction of group crimes. Even if the lockdown is not imposed there are many criminals who do not engage in criminal activities due to the fear of infection.  Various studies propose that the lockdowns specifically lower crimes that are committed in groups. But more severe crimes like homicides fail to decline.

Third, due to the economic problems caused by the pandemic crimes can relatively increase. Individuals losing employment, income, lack of new public policies, weaker public support systems, and a larger informal sector can result in to increase in the willingness of criminals to commit crimes.

PREVENTING CRIME AND KEEPING SAFE DURING COVID-19

Covid-19 has affected the whole world in many ways including the type and number of crimes being committed. Along with focusing on the health crisis, it is the right time now to take steps that can help in the reduction of crime rates to ensure the safety of the people. Here are a few steps that can be taken to reduce crime rates.

  1. Talking about the risk factors associated with crime, our focus should be shifted towards socially vulnerable areas where there is often a combination of risk factors such as high levels of unemployment, mental ill-health and drug and alcohol abuse.
  • Alcohol consumption should be reduced as it can lead to domestic violence and child abuse when stress increases.
  • For reducing cybercrime, people should be taught about the precautions they should take to protect themselves from cybercrimes. These include setting a strong password, updating software, managing social media settings, using a full-service Internet security suite etc.
  • Appropriate policy measures can help a lot in overcoming fraud and counterfeiting of the products.
  • Having a proactive approach and spreading awareness can also help a lot. We should treat violence as a public health concern to ensure the protection of the people.

CONCLUSION

In conclusion, I would like to say that, although covid pandemic has decreased overall crime rates. However, Covid has not caused a reduction in all kinds of crime nor in all countries across the globe. There are some types of crimes that have increased due to covid pandemic and there are some countries that have seen an increase in crime rates. The focus should be given equally to crime around the world as to pandemics. People should be taught about the precautions they need to take. The world should stand together and fight against all the terrorist activities taking place in this covid pandemic


[1] Bismee Taskin, ‘Increased work, domestic abuse — how Covid lockdown was especially hard on women in India’, The Print (9th February,2021) < https://theprint.in/india/increased-work-domestic-abuse-how-covid-lockdown-was-especially-hard-on-women-in-india/601328/> accessed 3rd September, 2021

[2] Ibid.

[3] ibid.

[4] ‘COVID-19 cyberthreats’, Interpol < https://www.interpol.int/en/Crimes/Cybercrime/COVID-19-cyberthreats> accessed 3rd September,2021.

[5] ‘Timeline: the Rise, Spread, and Fall of the Islamic State’, Wilson centre (28th October,2019) < https://www.wilsoncenter.org/article/timeline-the-rise-spread-and-fall-the-islamic-state> accessed 3rd September,2021.

[6] Thomas Wahl, ‘Council Conclusions: COVID-19 Impact on Terrorism and Violent Extremism’, Eucrim (6th July,2021)< https://eucrim.eu/news/council-conclusions-covid-19-impact-on-terrorism-and-violent-extremism/ > accessed 3rd September,2021

[7] Greg Barton, ‘n COVID’s shadow, global terrorism goes quiet. But we have seen this before, and should be wary’, The Conversation (14th August,2020) < https://theconversation.com/in-covids-shadow-global-terrorism-goes-quiet-but-we-have-seen-this-before-and-should-be-wary-144286> accessed 3rd September,2021

[8] ‘Afghanistan Crisis Updates: Al-Qaeda reportedly joins Taliban in attack on Panjshir valley, fight ongoing for two days’, The Economic Times (05 September, 2021) <https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/newsblogs/latest-daily-news-and-updates-september-02/liveblog/85854590.cms > accessed 5th Septembter,2021

[9] ‘Switzerland warns of terror attacks on Covid vaccine sites’, Mint (29th August, 2021) < https://www.livemint.com/news/world/switzerland-warns-of-terror-attacks-on-covid-vaccine-sites-11630226544056.html> accessed 5th September,2021

Tips for safe internet banking

All through the year, banks and financial institution are taking up innovative measures to protect its customers from such banking frauds. But sometimes it’s our very own negligence that makes us fall prey to such thefts. Whilst, both the banks and financial institutions are doing their part, we should too adopt a cautious attitude to protect ourselves. So, to help you out in this process, we have a gathered a list of some tips for safe internet banking that you can consider doing.

Digital advancements have made our lives much easier, we can now order food or purchase things in the comfort of our homes. These rapidly evolving advancements are also transforming the banking and financial sector in India. Whether someone is transferring funds, paying a bill or applying for such loans such technologies are enabling customers to do it in a more efficient and effective way. The number of users opting for internet banking is expected to double by 2020, making India an important hub for financial innovation. However, internet banking, just like like any other medium if not done with utmost precaution can prove to be risky. There are scams like phishing( fraudulent means for attaining confidential information) associated with internet banking which enables a third-party to access and misuse your personal information.

Banking online has made managing money a lot more convenient than it used to be. We don’t have to visit the bank to transfer our funds, or wait for the next paper statement to know what the balance is. All that information is at our fingertips. But while online banking has made things easier for us, it’s also made things easier for thieves.

Criminals don’t need to plan a heist to rob someone’s bank account anymore. All they need to do is wait for you to let your guard down and expose your personal information, or send out a virus that will collect the information. The only way to avoid becoming a thief’s next victim is to carefully guard your personal information and always practice these online banking safety tips. 

1. Don’t access your bank accounts on public Wi-Fi

When you’re on public Wi-Fi, hackers can more easily access your computer and steal personal information from it. You should never access your bank’s website through a computer, tablet, or mobile phone unless you’re on a secure Wi-Fi network with a password, or using your own cell phone data connection. This is much more difficult for thieves to hack, so it keeps your information safer.

2. Avoid saving your login information

Some websites give you the option to save your login information for future use, but if someone uses your computer or mobile device after you, they could gain access to your bank accounts. To at least help prevent this from happening, many banking sites now time out after a certain number of minutes of inactivity, and do not save your information.

3. Use strong passwords and change them often

Strong passwords have a mix of upper- and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. Many banks now require your online accounts to carry a password meeting these requirements. You should also change your password every couple of months, and use different passwords for all of your online accounts so that hackers will have a more difficult time gaining access to your information.

4. Use two-factor authentication whenever possible

Two-factor authentication is the next level of security that many banks are now offering. Usually, you give your bank your phone number, and it texts a code when you log in online. Some banks also enable you to request a code via email or a phone call. You must enter this code in addition to your password to log in. This way, even if someone has stolen your password, they cannot access your accounts. It’s another hoop to jump through, but it could help keep your money safe, so set it up if your bank offers it.

Terrorism

Terrorism is an act finished by means of an man or woman or a set of people to threaten the lives of fellow people. It creates an air of worry and anxiety inside the air as people are continually worried approximately their lives and their cherished ones. The folks that dedicate these acts are called terrorists. They perform many acts like shootings, bombings, kidnapping, murders, and many others.



There are kinds of terrorism. The primary kind of terrorism is political terrorism. You can outline political terrorism as the one that creates a large scale of panic among the people. Another type of terrorism is crook terrorism. It’s far related to while humans are abducted for ransoms.

Political terrorism is a higher diploma of terrorism. The reason for that is that it’s far performed via educated specialists who will visit any extent to carry out the act of terror. It is difficult for the regulation-imposing organizations to arrest and system these terrorists.

Terrorism is not constrained to the countrywide limitations of the u . S . A .. The branches of terrorism extend toward global obstacles as well. Local terrorism is the most dangerous one. Those human beings which are dying are scared, and you’ll go to heaven if you dedicate these acts of terror and die. They’re inclined to do something to go to heaven. One-of-a-kind terror agencies have distinctive ideologies.

Every act of terror has a purpose behind it. There are many reasons of terrorism. One of the main reasons of terrorism is the availability of arms and ammunition in vital characteristics. The supply of weapons of mass-destruction is quite simply available to the terrorist-like atomic bombs, guns, hydrogen bombs, missiles, and so on.



There are numerous motives why humans motel to terrorism. One of the reasons is dissatisfaction with the humans walking the united states, the u . S . A .’s monetary problems, lack of education, racism, monetary inequality, and differences in linguistics. Terrorism is one manner those individuals and corporations try to prove their points and justify the same.

The after-effects of terrorism are massive. One act of terrorism leaves a tremendous effect on an individual on my own, and as a network, the impact is more good sized. It leaves the humans in a consistent kingdom of worry and insecurity. Terrorist attacks take the lives of lots of people, and thousands and thousands of products are destroyed.

Some other great impact of terrorism is that it leads to the disbelief of the people in humanity. While people’s disbelief increases, it leads to extra people believing that violence is the answer to human beings’s troubles.

Terrorist attacks aren’t confined to india, it’s miles some thing that it’s friends and the other international locations across the world face and try and take care of it. One of the most substantial terrorist attacks within the global became in september 2001 on the exchange middle. The terrorist leader answerable for the attack on the world’s maximum effective united states of america became osama bin encumbered. This assault at the tallest building inside the world brought about the loss of life of hundreds of people and tens of millions of causalities.

Types of Cyber-bullying

Going ahead of my earlier post in this I will tell about the various types of Cyber-bullying. First I tell about different types of bullying:-

Physical bullying:-  includes hitting, kicking, or pushing you (or even just threatening to do so), as well as stealing, hiding, or ruining your things, and hazing, harassment, or humiliation.

Verbal bullying:- It includes name-calling, teasing, taunting, insulting, or otherwise verbally abusing you.

Relationship bullying:- It generally includes refusing to talk to you, excluding you from groups or activities, spreading lies or rumors about you, making you do things you don’t want to do. Boys frequently bully using physical threats and actions, while girls are more likely to engage in verbal or relationship bullying. But no type of bullying should ever be tolerated.

Now the Cyber Bullying is classified as

Harassment

It is most common to the way of online Bullying. It includes text wars, posting rumours or embarrassing message which cause emotional distress and public shaming.

Doxing

publishings revealing personal information about an individual online, for purposes of humiliating, defaming, or harassing the victim

Impersonation

It about creating fake accounts or gaining access to a person’s real social media accounts and posting things to damage the victim’s reputation.

Cyber stalking

Tracking and monitoring a person’s online activity, and using the internet to stalk or harass an individual.

These are common types of the Cyber Bullying. All students and teenager must be taught about the Cyber Bullying in its school education. Person must be aware about the Cyber Bullying.

Thanks

Introduction to Cyber Bullying

Before going ahead firstly, what is bullying? Bullying is an act or the behaviour of a person who hurts or frightens someone who is smaller or less powerful, often force the people to do something that they do not want to do. Now Cyber bullying is online bullying. Bullying with the use of digital platforms or technologies. It can take place on social media, messaging platforms like as Facebook, Twitter etc., gaming platforms, chatrooms, emails and other mobile forums. It includes various things some of these are:

spreading lies about or posting embarrassing photos of someone on social media

sending hurtful messages or threats via messaging platforms

impersonating someone and sending mean messages to others on their behalf. 

Its Impact

It also leaves bad Impact on mind of the victims i.e Emotional problems, including depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and stress for victims of cyberbullying. Even sometimes the victims commit suicide. If Cyber bullying is an intense form of psychological abuse, whose victims are more than twice as likely to suffer from mental disorders.

How to prevent Cyber Bullying?

Guardians should Be aware of their child’s online activities.

Adults should also teach children to recognize and be aware of the signs of cyberbullying themselves.

Never share passwords for their online accounts.

Never put something online that they wouldn’t want everyone to see.

Block communication with cyberbullies and do not read messages.

Children should have their screen time limited, and be encouraged to engage more in offline activities.

Thanks…