Online Fraud: Ways to Spot Fake Websites
By Nanji Nandang
Digital evolution and technological advancement has without doubt caused changes in almost all aspects of human endeavor. While these changes have contributed immensely to both human and social development, it has also ushered in an era of fraudulent activities online, what Nigerians widely regard as “Yahoo Yahoo” or “419” in the general sense.
These online fraud, has been mostly associated with Investment scams, a type of online fraud that offers unsuspecting members of the society juicy investment deals only to swindle their stakes at the long run and financial identity theft, is a type of online fradulent theft where a criminal steals personal or financial information from a victim without their knowledge in order to commit financial fraud or other crimes. According to a report by, a type that is carried out by scammers to access a personal financial details of persons and use it in turn to steal their bank savings.
These heralding issues and the possible risks online users are prone to, led the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to warn and discourage people against paying attention to messages and calls that demands access to their financial details or offers good investment deals. According to a report by , Datarepotal, a database for global internet use, mobile devices and apps, social media, and e-commerce.
Nigeria has over 104.4 million internet users as of January 2021 and this has even increased between 2020 and 2021 with over 19 million new users added. This enormous growth of internet users in the country suggests a wider reach for scammers, a concern that led the Central Bank of Nigeria to warn members of the public against paying attention to messages and claims that appear questionable or juicy to be true. This reality also makes it important for members of the public to know some of these fraudulent schemes are perpetuated, especially through fake websites and enticing links.
Fake websites: a strategy for online con-artists
Fake websites have become serious threats to online security. While some of these websites will tempt you to provide sensitive information to steal your identity, others simply do that when you merely click the link that is usually the bait.
Even more, according to new data by the American Federal Trade Commision, the use of social media by online fraudsters to get potential victims to click to their fake websites is on the rise. Scams starting on social media proliferated in early 2020 and are now a major issue.
Fact Checks of the week
Following the release of JAMB result and the outcry of low scores, which characterised this year’s examination, a viral WhatsApp image has a claim that the board has decided to hold a re-sit for candidates who scored less than 170 on July 3, due to…
On the 29th of June, the Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, during a press conference revealed that the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has been located and brought back to Nigeria to face trial for terrorism. The Justice Minister said…
A viral message relating to the COVID-19 infodemic circulating on Whatsapp in Sierra Leone purports that thousands of genetically modified mosquitoes inoculated with Viagra have escaped from a high security laboratory in China and that their bite can lead to continuous erection and…
Tip Of The Week
There’s precious little that we can do about the barrage of misinformation that we see daily, but there’s a lot we can do together if we learn to identify suspicious claims in the news and refrain from fuelling the fire by spreading them! Here are our top picks of likely-to-be-false news which [sadly] couldn’t be fact-checked.
CLAIM: Viral WhatsApp message announces cholera outbreak
SOURCE: WhatsApp Message
A viral WhatsApp message claims there is an outbreak of Cholera, lists symptoms and urges readers to report, immediately, any case of cholera to health centres close to them for early treatment. How true can this be? As much as this message appears to be serving a public good, it is important to be skeptical of its claims as health information, such as this, should come from trusted/identifiable sources (Credible news platforms) or regulatory bodies (NCDC, WHO).
Questions to ask yourself: How true is this claim? Which credible platform has published it? What is the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) saying?
What you should do: Verify before sharing.
Other Fact Checks
- My first month as a Dubawa fellow – one to remember
- Some people claimed Nigeria’s 1914 Amalgamation expired after 100 years; is this true?
- Is LAUTECH tuition cheapest in South-West as claimed by Gov. Makinde?
- False! Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta Twitter account not suspended because of Nnamdi Kanu’s arrest
- No evidence Buhari threatened local government chairmen with imprisonment over funds
- Africa’s Billionaire Aliko Dangote is not investing 60% of his asset in The USA
- Woman in this video is Nnamdi Kanu’s wife, not lady used to lure him for arrest
- Fraudulent scheme, Access Capital Investment Company, promises double returns on investment
- Online Fraud: Ways to Spot Fake Websites
- Adamu Garba claimed Crowwe App was removed for an update but this is false
- No evidence Arab League sent warning message to FG on Biafra movement
- SATIRE: Mosquitoes Inoculated With Viagra Have Not Escaped From Wuhan Laboratory.
- Nigerian flag unveiled in Ibadan not largest in the world as reported in the media
- Devious website lures readers with alarming headlines, tags false claim to Lai Mohammed
- Abu Dhabi University not offering Fully-Funded Scholarships
- No, JAMB has not fixed a re-sit examination for July 3 as claimed in viral WhatsApp message
- How #Twitterban, Koo emergence allow Nigerians to explore tech space
- Viral Message On Buhari’s Alleged Attempt To Give Nigerians’ Land To Fulanis Not Authored By Obasanjo
- Man-like creature in viral video is a dummy from prank video, not Werewolf killed in Nigeria
- Nigerian Government set to train 37, 000 fact-checkers
- Fuel Pump Prices have not been increased in Sierra Leone contrary to a public notice in circulation
- Suggestions that AstraZeneca vaccine is causing COVID infections, FALSE!
- How true is El-Rufai’s claim that no country in the world offers free university education?