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Samoa police stop hackers as cyber crime climbs

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Apia, SAMOA — A warning has been issued that cyber crime is on the rise in Samoa after the police thwarted an attempt by hackers to take money from a government authority and a local company.

The Samoa Observer reports the Land Transport Authority and a local construction company were victims to unknown hackers, who tried to siphon more than $100,000 from each of the parties.

New Zealand Police allegedly alerted the Samoan Ministry of Police, which prevented the loss of funds.

Police Commissioner, Auapaau Logoitino Filipo said New Zealand Police picked up the suspicious activities when email accounts between the parties were hacked by the unknown party.

He said the Land Transport Authority was in correspondence with a Kiwi firm and was in the process of making payments for major projects.

"Upon review it was found the hacker got into the accounts and asked to change the account number to make the payments," Auapaau said.

The Commissioner said it was difficult to track down the hackers and it was fortunate no payment was made.