50,000 To 100,000 Involved In 419 Scams

from the quite-the-industry-going-there dept

The BBC is running an interview with Nuhu Ribadu, the man in charge of cracking down on 419 scams in Nigeria. He talks about how the internet has made it easier to do these scams, and how much it has harmed the reputation of Nigeria. At one point, though, he points out that most Nigerians are not involved in 419 scams, and that “only” 50,000 to 100,000 Nigerians out of a total population of 130 million are involved. Now, percentage-wise, he’s right that it’s a fairly small percentage. But, in absolute terms, that’s still 50,000 to 100,000 people working on these scams. That’s the size of a very large company. Think about just how much money these scams must be pulling in to attract so many people.

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Comments on “50,000 To 100,000 Involved In 419 Scams”

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dorpus says:

The Polio Scam

Nigeria has also exported polio to neighboring African countries that had previously eradicated it. Muslim clerics in northern Nigeria have been opposing vaccinations, saying it is a CIA conspiracy to make Muslim women infertile.

We can look forward to more incidents like this in the future, when forms of superstition or conspiracy theories will have a global impact. Pakistan had an epidemic of deformed children because people bought into a theory that iodized salt is a CIA conspiracy to make Pakistanis sterile. Maybe vegan activists of the West will cook up theories that milk is bad for babies?

beck says:

You Can Help

It shouldn’t be too hard to catch the scammers. Just send the police to wait at the Western Union office. Probably 99% of the people who go there are arriving to collect money sent from their victims.

Here’s how you can help: Reply back to the fraudsters. Eventually they will ask for money. Make up some fake Western Union information and tell them to go pick up the cash. If Nuhu Ribadu is smart he’ll be waiting for them.

That’s the fun part, when you get an angry email back complaining about making a wasted trip to Western Union.

You need to send them a 10 digit MTCN (control number) and a test question (up to 4 words) and the answer. (Western Union transfers to Africa require the test question.)

The MTCN (Control Number): 6120359627
The Test Question: Where does Joseph live?
Test Question Answer: Ohio

And off they go to pick up their money!

Ed says:

No Subject Given

Think about just how much money these scams must be pulling in to attract so many people.

These scams don’t have to work at all. It’s only necessary that some people think they work. This is why we have spam in general, not just the 419 scam. Even if the response rate on spam dropped to literally 0%, there would still be a few naive, uninformed, and/or stupid people who believe that the easy path to riches is by sending tens of millions of emails.

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