Inside the deadly instant loan app scam that blackmails with nudes

Posted: 11th October 2023

Source: BBC News

A blackmail scam is using instant loan apps to entrap and humiliate people across India and other countries in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. At least 60 Indians have killed themselves after being abused and threatened. A​ BBC undercover investigation has exposed those profiting from this deadly scam in India and China.

Astha Sinhaa woke up to her aunt’s panicked voice on the phone. “Don’t let your mother leave the house.”

Half-asleep, the 17-year-old was terrified to find her mum Bhoomi Sinhaa in the next room, sobbing and frantic.

Here was her funny and fearless mother, a respected Mumbai-based property lawyer, a widow raising her daughter alone, reduced to a frenzied mess.

“She was breaking apart,” Astha says. A panicked Bhoomi started telling her where all the important documents and contacts were, and seemed desperate to get out of the door.

Astha knew she had to stop her. “Don’t let her out of your sight,” her aunt had told her. “Because she will end her life.”

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