Eight months back, Momota Begum went to a local MFS agent to encash her savings after fifteen months of employment at the SWAPNO project. She was excited as she intended to put the money into her next venture. But everything changed soon after she heard about the hacking.
Not only Momota but fifteen other SWAPNO beneficiaries in Jamalpur district lost their hard-earned money through hacking last year. Recently they have regained their savings after a rigorous investigation of Bangladesh Counter-Terrorism and Cyber Crime Unit.
SWAPNO's cash-for-work PublicWorks Program allows its participants to deposit a percentage of their wages ina mobile wallet, which they receive after the project is completed. So, whenthe beneficiaries heard about hacking, they lodged a General Diary (GD) at thelocal police station and informed the project officials. After hearing thenews, SWAPNO Dhaka office filed a case at Ramna Thana. The case was then handedover to the Cyber Crime Unit for further investigation. Six suspects werearrested based on the investigation. After that, the High court instructed themto deny their bail application. Finally, after apprehending another group ofseven criminals, the Cyber Crime team was able to recover BDT 2,69,000 in cash.The case is still being investigated, and SWAPNO project has recently handedover the money to the beneficiaries with the help of the Cyber Crime Unit.