CNB drug busts brothers through Telegram, have been sussing out encrypted messages for a while

If you think your private chats are um, private, you might best keep to yourself when discussing illicit activities over text.

The Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) today said they arrested two brothers, a 17-year-old and a 25-year-old for suspected drug activities on Jan. 10.

Among the drugs seized were 1,073g of cannabis, 85g of ‘Ice’, 43g of Ketamine, 310g of Ecstasy tablets, 538 Erimin-5 (a derivative of benzos) tablets and 198 LSD stamps. The estimated street value for the drugs totaled S$124,000 (US$93.288).

Investigations revealed that the CNB had been monitoring platforms like Telegram to suss out illegal drug transactions. This was probably how the police managed to seize the operation ultimately.

Believe it or not, CNB said that they are aware that drug offenders and syndicates have been using encrypted messaging applications like Telegram to conduct their activities.

The CNB added that drug offenders may think that such applications can offer a certain level of anonymity to carry out illegal activities and evade CNB’s surveillance but they have been taking regular enforcement actions lately.

“Regardless of the platform or tactics used in an attempt to evade detection, there is no safe haven for drug offenders in Singapore,” the bureau wrote.


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