Perception of cyber-crime by Nigerian youth

Improper use of internet in Nigeria especially by the youth has gone viral. Cybercrime is an act or the commission of an act that is forbidden or the omission of a duty that is commanded by a public law using internet and that makes the offender liable to punishment by the law.

In Nigeria today, there are several internet based crimes known as fraudulent electronic mails, pornography, identity theft, hacking, cyber harassment, spamming, automated teller machine spoofing, piracy and phishing.

With advancement of technology in Nigeria, the issue of internet fraud got exposed fully when it was difficult to deny youth support of the menace with Yahoozee shirts, Yahoozee dance steps, Yahoozee songs from the likes of Olu Maintain, whom some people claimed to be one of those engaged in cyber crime due to his song, “Yahoozee”.

Now, it has gone viral to the extent that youths are using some social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Hangout, among others. This makes some inventors of these platforms to be more vigilant. Using Facebook as an example, if a user tries to log in to an account using irrelevant password or using a white woman picture as profile picture, where African women are known to be black, that is suspicious and the investor will hack the account.

Apart from using social media in dating with the white men claiming to be a white woman, some are fabricating and duplicating cheques to withdraw huge amount of money from bank accounts in other countries, while some even order goods.

At times, some of the youth claim unemployment as reason for them to engage in this act and trace it to the adage “An idle mind is the devil’s workshop”, but actually that shouldn’t be an excuse for them, because there are different entrepreneurial skills, but they ignore these because of their laziness.

Recently, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) arrested Nigerian singer, Afeez Fashola, better known as Naira Marley, and four others in relation to alleged advanced fee scam and related cyber crimes.  Their arrest followed an early morning raid on Friday, May 10, 2019 at 9, Gbangbola Street, Ikate, Lekki, Lagos state.

However, a video featuring Ruggedman had gone viral in which the rapper mocked Naira Marley for advocating internet fraud. The artist noted that the promotion of such cyber crime impacted negatively on Nigerians abroad. Marley, whose recent song AM A YAHOO BOY, responded by mocking Ruggedman in an Instagram video and defended his artistic choices.

The EFCC last year launched operation Cyber Crime storm which sought to curb the activities of internet fraudsters. This shows that Nigerian government has not been taking the issue of cyber crime lightly because it’s one of the problems bedeviling the country.

Uthman Olamilekan Animasahun,

Department of Mass Communication,

University of Maiduguri

07054135266 [email protected]

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