Anti-Corruption Agency Decries High Rate of Women Scammers In Nigeria; Warn Online-Shoppers

There are currently more cases of female scammers now under investigation than ever before, a top official of an anti-corruption agency recently has hinted in a private discussion with LeadingReporters Lead Investigator.

 Abdulrasheed Bawa, Executive Chairman Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC)

The senior detective who would not want her name mentioned in print said that most of the cases they are treating now involve women and ladies who usually leverage online sells to defraud their unsuspecting customers.  She described the development as worrisome.

“Our office is daunted with reports and records of female scammers who mostly leverage online shopping to defraud their victims. There are others who parade themselves as celebrities who now help top government functionaries and politicians to launder money.

The source said that fraudsters and unscrupulous public servants are now cashing in on women’s desperation and vulnerability to commit heinous crimes.  This, according to the source may be linked to the fact that women are seen to be more innocent, more responsible and less prone to crime. 

“The narratives are changing.  Women are becoming the new face of crime.  Our reports and series of investigations we have carried out and are still carrying out point to the fact that more and more women are getting involved in crime, mostly cybercrime.

“In the case of online scammers, these women pose as merchants and sellers of exotic materials.  They post these materials online, together with attractive pictures and videos.  Those videos are usually not their real faces.  They use those videos to lure their potential target.  They make their victims to part with their monies in the name of buying some materials, apparels and other attractive stuff.  The game changes immediately after they received the money.  You’d realized you have been scammed.  

“They mostly post beautiful and enchanting pictures on their timeline.  They make offer of irresistible products, mostly wears and other fast selling products to their victims at enticing prices and rates. They will tell you something like  “The prices are highly discounted because we want to empty our warehouse for new products”.  They use different fake names and different Facebook and Instagram accounts.

“They sound business-like.  Once you pay, they bring down the account and wipe transaction history.  In this case, the only thing you have left is information of the account you transferred the money into.  We need this information.  It is the only link we can use to track them.   

“A new trend now is that they do not use conventional banking systems.  They use some of these unconventional banking accounts and systems.  We are already working with other authorities to track them and bring them to book.

“Regarding so-called celebrities acting as conduits for politicians and serving government functionaries, we are seriously monitoring and following them.  They buy property for these politicians and they get percentage for a job well done.  They enter into oath-taking, precisely oath of secrecy with these unscrupulous elements.

“People should be careful as not to fall victims of these scammers”.  She said.

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