The title of this post will ring a bell to some people and to some others it might not. Well I suggest you first checkout Wikipedia
for a low down on what 419 is. 419 has grown to become one of the worst internet hoaxes such that there are now sites dedicated to fighting its spread. An example is 419 eater
. A recent article on the trend was posted on CNNís website
. With this much online interest on Nigeria in connection with 419, Modenine recorded a song on the phenomenon last year titled ď419 state of mind part 2
Ē. Itís a great song; you should check it out. Itís from this same term that the London based Nigerian hip hop group ď419 Squad
Ē got its name from.
Like most people out there Iím anti-419Öand thatís where it stops. Iíve never really bothered myself about the phenomenon. But a recent experience hanging out with a dude whoís into 419 made me learn a lot more about the industry and finally understand or grasp the idea behind some of the moves peeps around me have been pulling. Let me let you guys in on what Iíve learnt.
Before I start let me first make this statement. Iíve since known what 419 is and the measures one can take to prevent oneself from falling victim to the scheme. This Iím sure is also known by every internet freak. So it makes me really sick when Iím searching for stuff on Nigerian on Google and a lot of the results are from people running their mouth and hating on Nigeria because of 419 scam/spam. Fvck yíall! You know the safety measures, so implement them and shut up.
Most a times the fear of a bleak future, the need to fulfill financial responsibilities and sheer hardship push people into getting involved in the scam. Other times share curiosity; negative peer influence and greediness are the motives for involvement. And believe you me thereíve been many petty and big time successful 419ers.
In relation to online harvesting which people do through scam letters, there are two other common online scams. And these are perpetuated through chatting and through phising.
1) Via chatting
, guys pose as ladies and try to sweet talk other guys into falling in love with them and ultimately to send them money. They use pictures of beautiful women sourced online in their chatting profiles and send it to their dumb victims via email. Also they often enlist the help of their female friends to answer calls from their dumb victims and keep up the guise. Their victims are often old white financially comfortably guys who are losers in the game of love. How else can one explain a guy swallowing all the bull rubbish that a girl from across the globe loves you, and then end up sending her money. Someone youíve never seen before. Ainít there girls in your city to checkout? Damn, the older the dumber.
is not too common in Nigeria. And thatís because it requires brains and many of the 419 peeps ainít brainy enough (or are limited by resources and time) to sit down and learn. In Nigeria itís often perpetuated on a small scale and involves stealing peopleís password and holding it ransom in exchange for money. Victims of phising are often careless people and internet novices.
3) On-line harvesting
is the big one, the center point of internet fraud in Nigeria. Greed is often what draws the perpetuators, what draws the victims and what in some cases eventually brings about the downfall of the perpetuators. And thatís because some people who hit it big still go on with the fraud instead of going legit until theyíre finally caught. The format for the trick is often via email; telling the unsuspecting recipient that thereís a large amount of money stashed somewhere not known by the necessary authorities. But if he/she can provide some money itíll be secretly secured and the loot shared 50-50. An advanced fee/money is always sought, thus the term ďadvanced fee fraudĒ (419 after section 419 of the Nigerian criminal code). The scammers make generous use of fax machines, email extractors, telephones and money transfer systems like Western Union to carry out their nefarious activities.
All this requires a lot of patience and investment in time and resources by the scammers. And Internet cafes often turn to the scammersí second home. To counter the menace the EFCC (Economic and Financial Crimes Commission) over here has been on its toes.
Methinks 419 runs (schemes) is boring and a waste of time. Itís better to engage in discovering the beauty of the internet through the millions of wonderful sites out there. 419 has never been my thing and Iím glad I channeled my internet freakism to other positive angles.