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Truth About Cyber-crimes, Online Scams and Why You Should Not Be Involved

Cybercrime involves any fraudulent activity done or achieved with the use of the computer over the internet. It primarily refers to Internet-based activities aimed at deceiving other internet users or companies into spending money or any resource that would cost them but be of benefit to the individual who promoted such activity. 
These would include the following:

  • Firewall Hacking
  • Phishing
  • Impersonation, etc.

Cybercrimes and Hacking 

Over the years, the rate of criminal cyber activities has gradually increased with more understanding of the computer and the Internet. Young people have been more commonly involved in these activities. Their objectives generally include either of the following: to make quick money, seek recognition on the internet, or sometimes, just to create a personal relevance in the world of computer networking.
The increasing burden of these activities has led to the development of better cybersecurity tools and surveillance systems. Web-based companies now develop well-encrypted data and information system with multiple security obstacles that must be bypassed before gaining full access. But in spite of these, cases where such strong firewalls have been breached, are still reported.

In order to protect their systems, web-based companies seek to discover the security loopholes in the programs and find ways to better encrypt their databases.
Ethical hackers are computer programmers whose job is to ensure that the most sophisticated hacking methods or at least, the available methods don't break through the company's system.

Other forms of cybercrimes could be categorised as the "direct cybercrime". This category would include direct interaction with vulnerable persons or groups with the intent of exploiting them monetarily or otherwise. This category most commonly involves online dating scams, online businesses and fake transactions. Read on how to identify and avoid falling for online scams.

Online Dating Scams

It is no news that people get robbed of their money in the name of online dating and relationships. There are many online dating sites where people check in to find a life partner.
More interestingly, common social media sites like Facebook where two-way communication is possible also feature cases of relationship scam.
People become really susceptible when they get desperate for a relationship, marriage or just a sex partner. This category of susceptible individuals include the following:
1. Young females above the age of 30.
2. Older persons who have divorced or lost their partner and still desire to satisfy their sexual urge.
3. Wealthy singles who just want a companion in their life.

Relationship scammers often come as males pretending to be beautiful ladies interested in a relationship. They then go on to demand items of money and property from that victim who may become deceived. On the other hand, the scammer can pretend to be a handsome well-built man who may succeed in luring innocent but desperate ladies to wire them money.
In the end, the victim may or may not discovers that they are only imposters who are only interested in getting their money and disappear into thin air.

Fraudulent Online Money Scams

The term "yahhoo boys or G-boys" have been popularised in Nigeria to mean people who fraudulently obtain money from others over the internet. It is still been used to date. 
My first understanding of online fraudsters involve people who would sit in front of their computers for long hours, days or even years making attempts to lure people into paying them some undeserving money. They would then eventually 'hit the jackpot' after a long time. However, the exact thing they do was never revealed by anyone or I would say nobody else knows.
Then, attention was on banks, other financial institutions and some few wealthy individuals. They would forge certificates and other people's identity(identity theft) in order to be allowed access to the funds that belonged to them.

They may be caught in the process but the all they needed is never to be caught at that point.
They lived extravagant lifestyles after making some huge cash in a way that reveals that they are proud of what they do and does not mind if the general public notices that they are fraudulent.
After all, there is not enough evidence to indict them.

Phishing refers to the simulation of an otherwise genuine advertisement on the internet by creating graphics or texts representing a notable company without the knowledge and approval of that company with the intent of extracting vital personal information from the victim to gain access to their financial and/or physical assets. A good example is a neatly created fake Facebook login page, where the user will try to log in, but with the result of sending their login details to the mastermind behind the plot.

Facebook phishing page, source: csfinfotechblog

Scammers also find other ways to deceive people to transfer money to them, assets or properties. One way they can achieve this is by promising their victims huge gains which they would greedily see as a potential investment opportunity.

In some parts of West African, rumours now have it that diabolic means have been employed to make their victims succumb to the plot. And this may be one of the explanations to situations where highly intelligent and careful individuals fall for the scams despite the much protective information they have at their disposal. Whether or not this is true has not been fully verified but what we can all agree on is that they only succeed when they let some elements of greed or lust show up.

The First Principle Of Avoiding Scams

I have written a full post on how to avoid falling for online scams in another post but in this section, I am going to talk about the first principle of avoiding scams. You can never be victimised if you are not first vulnerable.
In trying to understand "vulnerability", we must first recognize that uncontrolled interest on the part of potential victims is the commonest cause of vulnerability among victims of a scam.
When offers that look to good to be true presents themselves before us, we must close our instincts to their luring effects and tell ourselves that they are not true indeed.

Inasmuch as it is a great thing to harness profitable opportunities that come our way on a daily basis, we must satisfactorily verify these opportunities as true before we accept them.
Some other things that I also pointed out in the other posts include asking the offerer for some more time to think about the offer. Scammers have learnt to be patient with catch, but they get really disturbed when you ask them for more time to think about the proposal. They just want to hear that you are thinking because they fear that you may inquire for information that will reveal their dubious scheme. 
Desperation for marriage can be considered normal especially in people who are advancing in age but are yet unmarried. Counselling to unmarried young people who are ready for marriage should revolve around patience and endurance

Reasons Why You Should Not Engage In Scams

Due to the low standard of living and high poverty levels, people are forced to venture into fraudulent activities. Their justification is that life is tough and there are no other legitimate opportunities for livelihood. However, these reasons are not sufficient enough to make you get involved in the fraudulent business of cheating other people and cause them serious pain over their loss. 
Losing money or property can be really so devasting if you have ever passed through such experiences and you will agree that it is not worth it, causing another such amount of pain.

Better Job Alternatives

In considering your choices of job, there are some factors you must bear in mind. These include the following:
  • Your passion for the job.
  • How acceptable it is, morally and legally. 
  • Value creation or addition to you or others.
In view of the above criteria, you can see that there are better alternatives. People just venture into things just because they want to make money or gain wealth and luxury. But there are actually legitimate ways to fulfil this purpose and alongside, add value to the people around you. Some important areas you could alternatively consider include:

  1. Software designing
  2. Web programming 
  3. Affiliate marketing programs
  4. Business agents
  5. Project analysts
  6. Account managers
  7. Retailers and Wholesale
  8. e.t.c
Looking at the bright side of things, we would see that people who are so good at persuading others to do something for them could harness that gift into "business promotion" or other related job activities.
Involving in dubious and fraudulent activities may seem quicker and faster-yielding but there is a lot you lose in the long run. By involving in a safer and more productive enterprise, you also create value for yourself and there is heightened productivity and creativity
On the other hand, when you resort to deceiving people, your only skill is 'theft', and probably await the day you will be caught and punished accordingly. But you are actually better suited to lead a different life through your many potentials. Therefore strive to be productive, creative and never agree to justify crime for any reason.

Prosper Yole

I am a lifestyle blogger, I write useful articles on successful life tips and hacks. Posts bearing Prosper Yole as author are either written by the blog author himself or by our various other contributors. Thank you for reading through. I look forward to having you more often. Please subscribe to my blog and follow me on Twitter @ProsperYoleOfficial

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