LAHORE: The Federal Investigation Agency's cyber crime wing has arrested a man here for allegedly hacking into the Facebook accounts of people and blackmailing them, an official confirmed Saturday.

The 'Facebook hacker' was arrested on the charge of hacking into Facebook accounts and creating fake profiles on the social networking website, FIA deputy director Hammad Raza told Dawn.

The suspect also allegedly blackmailed people by hacking into their accounts and gaining access to their photos and other personal data, he said.

This is the first First Information Report of the new year that has been registered by FIA's cyber crime wing Lahore, Raza said.

"2016 will be the year of crackdown against Facebook and other social media hackers," he added.

Also read: FIA arrests PTI activist for ‘tweeting against judiciary’

Although the FIA has no remedy for complaints regarding cyber crimes, including fake and stolen identities on Facebook, Twitter and other social media links, in the absence of any comprehensive law and has not signed any agreement (of cooperation) with the foreign administrators of these networks, it has engaged its anti-cyber crime teams to take help from these cyber networks to reach the culprits.

FIA Director (Lahore region) Dr Usman Anwar earlier told Dawn that the FIA had been facing problems in laying hands on those involved in hacking and subsequently misusing the Facebook and Twitter accounts, primarily because of not signing agreements with the networks’ administrations and lack of effective legislation here.

The FIA has been receiving a number of complaints regarding ‘misuse of Facebook and Twitter accounts’, especially from young women, but it is unable to take up most of them (because of lack of an effective law). In exceptional circumstances, the agency takes up a few cases, invoking the Telegraphic Act or Electronic Transaction Ordinance (ETO).

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