EFCC Arrests 21 For Alleged Internet Fraud In Lagos

 

Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Lagos Zonal Office, have arrested 21 persons for their alleged involvement in computer-related fraud.

The suspects are Shittu Yakubu, Akinsola Afeez, Adeniyi Joseph, Opeyemi Wahab, Idris Sunday, Lawal Moshood, Jubril Yusuf, Olusegun Mohammed, Adekunle Adesanya, and Damilola Abijide.

Others are Sola Adio, Oladipo Ademola, Damilola Adewale, Akinsola Ridwan, Ogunlaye Damilare, Falaye Peters, Magnus Toni, Onanuga Ahmed, Bolarinwa Segun, Onanuga Olawale, and Ayomide Afeez.

READ ALSO: 1,503 Suspects Arrested, 1,024 Crime Cases Reported In Katsina – Police

The suspects, who are members of an organized cybercrime syndicate, were arrested on Wednesday, December 30, 2020, during an early morning operation at Roxbury Leisure Homes Phase 2, Lekki-Epe Expressway, Ikota, Lagos, following credible intelligence received by the Commission about their alleged criminal activities.

Investigations revealed that the suspects had allegedly been defrauding unsuspecting members of the public of their hard-earned money before their arrest.

Items recovered from the suspects at the point of arrest are 12 vehicles, mobile phones, and laptop computers.

They will be charged to court as soon as investigations are concluded.

EFCC Arrests Two Music Producers Over Alleged Cyber Crimes In Uyo

EFCC Arrests Two Music Producers Over Alleged Cyber Crimes In Uyo
Some alleged cyber crime suspects arrested by the EFCC.

 

Operatives of the Uyo zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC ) have arrested two music producers and four others over their alleged involvement in cyber crimes in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.

This was contained in a statement signed by the commission’s spokesman, Dele Oyewale and released on Friday.

According to the statement, the music producers are John Obot and Odok Valentine. Others are; Emdiong Iwoenang ; Christian Alvan Okechukwu, Innocent Japhet and Edem Uwana.

They were arrested recently at their apartment located on 3 Ring Road, off Shelter Afrique, Uyo.

READ ALSO: Former NDDC MD Forfeits N250 Million To Government – EFCC

Items recovered from them, at the point of arrest, are: five laptops; 11 mobile phones; one grey -coloured Mazda 3, a black- coloured Lexus ES 350 and a silver- coloured Toyota Camry car, the EFCC said.

Forensic analyses of the 5 laptops and 11 phones recovered from them, revealed evidences of their various levels of involvement in cyber crimes.

Based on the incriminating evidences against them, they all owned up and made confessional statements.

The EFCC said they will be charged to court as soon as investigations are concluded.

Nepal Arrests 122 Chinese Over Suspected Cyber Scam

 

More than 100 Chinese nationals in Nepal on tourist visas have been detained over a suspected cyber scam, police said Wednesday, in the country’s largest-ever crackdown involving foreigners.

Eight women were among the 122 Chinese nationals arrested in a coordinated police raid on nine houses in the capital Kathmandu on Monday.

Police said the houses were set up like hostels with large kitchens, bunk beds and rows of tables and chairs for working.

“We suspect they were involved in cyber crime. We are investigating the evidence… action will then be taken accordingly,” Niraj Bahadur Shahi, chief of Nepal’s Central Investigation Bureau, told AFP.

More than 700 mobile phones, 331 laptops and nearly a hundred desktop computers were confiscated from the houses. Police also gathered pen drives and SIM cards.

Nepal coordinated with Beijing’s National Central Bureau in the operation, Shahi added.

The arrests come days after more than 340 Chinese nationals were arrested in the Philippines in a raid on unlicensed gaming businesses.

And last month almost 700 Chinese nationals were arrested in Malaysia when authorities busted a major online investment scam operation. It is not clear whether the arrests are linked.

AFP

Cyber Crime: EFCC Frees 13 Out Of 94 Suspects Arrested In Nightclub Raids

 

The Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) in Ibadan, Oyo State, have freed 13 out of 94 suspected cyber fraudsters.

The 94 suspects had been arrested on Sunday night after the agency raided three Night Clubs in Osogbo and Iwo towns, in Osun State.

Recovered items included 19 exotic cars and over 100 phones.

13 persons were, however, exonerated and released after preliminary investigations found them to be innocent.

Read Also: EFCC Raids Osogbo Nightclub, Arrests 94 Suspected Cyber Fraudsters

In an exclusive interview with Channels Television, the Deputy Chief Detective Superintendent of the EFCC in the state Mr. Bright Igeleke, said the latest arrests are an indication of the resolve of the commission to rid the country of economic and financial crimes.

He further stated that so far, at least 152 convictions have been made on internet fraud and related offenses.

Imo Police Arrest Suspect For Defrauding Holland National

Police Nab Suspects With 'Biafra Currency' In Abia
File Photo

 

The Imo State Police Command has arrested a man, 28, for defrauding a Holland National of the sum of 15,000 Euros.

Parading the suspect on Tuesday alongside three other accomplices at the police headquarters in Owerri the state capital, the Commissioner of Police, Dasuki Galadinchi, said the arrest came after two Holland nationals reported a case of fraud to his office.

Thereafter, the police began an investigation into the case.

The suspect, on the other hand, confessed to having duped the Holland national through a fake account he created on Facebook.

Kenyan President Signs Controversial Cyber-Crimes Law

File photo: Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyatta

 

Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyatta, on Wednesday, signed into law a sweeping cyber-crimes act criminalising fake news and online bullying, with clauses that critics argue could stifle press freedom.

The bill imposes stiff fines and jail terms for hacking, computer fraud, forgery of data, cyber espionage, publishing child pornography or sending pornographic content via any electronic means.

However, bloggers and media rights activists have expressed alarm over a clause which criminalises the publication of “false, misleading or fictitious data.”

Punishment for this can be a fine of $50,000 (42,000 euro) or up to two years in prison, or both.

The Committee for Protection of Journalists (CPJ) last week urged Kenyatta not to sign the bill, arguing it would make it easy for authorities to gag journalists publishing information they dislike.

“Kenyan legislators have passed a wide-ranging bill that will criminalise free speech, with journalists and bloggers likely to be among the first victims if it is signed into law,” said CPJ’s Africa coordinator, Angela Quintal.

Additionally, anyone found guilty of publishing false information that “is calculated or results in panic, chaos, or violence” or that is “likely to discredit the reputation of a person” can be fined $50,000 or jailed for up to 10 years.

Article 19, a London-based freedom of expression watchdog, in an April analysis of the bill, said it contained important additions modelled after relevant international standards.

However it also “contains several broadly defined offences with harsh sentences that could dramatically chill freedom of expression online in Kenya.”

Rights activists have warned about an increasingly hostile and oppressive environment for journalists in Kenya, after a dramatic and bloody election season in 2017.

“While political tensions have eased, the ability of journalists to report and comment freely continue to be undermined by state officials,” Human Rights Watch said earlier this month.

In January government closed three television stations for a week after they tried to provide live coverage of opposition leader Raila Odinga staging a mock inauguration ceremony, a move criticised by Kenya’s foreign allies.

Then in March, eight prominent columnists working for Kenya’s biggest media group, the Nation Media Group, quit over increased meddling by government and a loss of media freedom at its outlets.

AFP

Cyber Crime: How Well Is Nigeria Fighting The Menace?

cybercrime, Nigeria Cyber crime has remained an issue of growing concern as despite increasing awareness and efforts to fight the menace in Nigeria and across the globe, cyber criminals seem to remain undaunted.

In May 2015 the cyber crime bill was signed into law, properly defining the act as unlawful with penalties attached to any disobedience of the law.

Head Cloud, IP/CSO, Chidinma Iwe, explaining the rudiments of the cyber space in an interview with Channels Television, said that it  is a challenging environment that is fast evolving.

“It is one of those landscapes that never remain the same, so the challenge is for those charged with the responsibility of security for their organisations, to always be up to skill and speed with what’s going on globally,” he said.

Iwe opined that although Nigeria is not as prepared as it ought to be, for any eventualities, there are however “a lot of people paying close attention”.

“We are doing a lot of work around information security.

“In terms of preparedness it would be expecting too much to ask Nigeria to be as prepared as the westerns and some other more advanced economies because the kind of infrastructure they have in place, differs from ours in Nigeria”.

According to him, “the world of cyber-crime is a world controlled by several cartels.

“You can liken these cartels to those of the drug industry” Iwe added.

He explained that there is both a demand and a supply end and one cannot exactly say what particular types of crimes are common.

He, however, advised organisations that to be better protected from cyber-criminal attacks, they should first identify their critical assets, i.e identify what assets expose them to huge “reputational losses”.

 

China Passes New Law To Tighten Cyber Security

China, cyber securityChina, on Monday, passed a law to further tighten cyber security, a decision which has raised concerns that it could intensify already wide-ranging Internet censorship.

The new rules, which were approved by the country’s rubber-stamp parliament and will go into effect next summer, are part of a broader effort to better define how the internet is managed inside China’s borders.

Business groups, in August, had petitioned the Government to have a rethink on the proposed cyber security law, saying that it would hurt foreign companies and further separate the country from the internet.

Officials on the other hand, say the rules would help stop cyber attacks and help prevent acts of terrorism, while critics have argued that it would only further erode internet freedom.

Restrictions on the flow of data across borders “provide no security benefits but will create barriers to Chinese as well as foreign companies operating in industries where data needs to be shared internationally,” James Zimmerman, Chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in China, wrote in an emailed statement.

He added that by creating such restrictions, China risked isolating itself technologically from the rest of the world.

Also contained in the law, individual users are expected to register their real names to use messaging services in China.

Human Rights Watch said on Monday, that it was concerned about several aspects of the law, including that it calls for real-name registration for users of Chinese instant messaging services.

“The already heavily censored internet in China needs more freedom, not less,” the group’s China Director, Sophie Richardson, wrote in a statement.

“Despite widespread international concern from corporations and rights advocates for more than a year, Chinese authorities pressed ahead with this restrictive law without making meaningful changes.”

The law, however, is an important statement from Beijing on how the internet should be run: with tighter controls over companies and better tracking of individual citizens.

Referring to it as a “basic law,” Chen Jihong, a partner at the Zhong Lun law firm in Beijing, stated that the rules were set up to deal with the growing number of legal issues regarding the Chinese internet and to seek to strike a balance between privacy and security.

Terrorists Have Always Been In Cyberspace – Max Gbanite

Max GbaniteA security consultant, Mr Max Gbanite, has thrown his weight behind the Nigerian military’s recent announcement that it was moving the war on terror to the cyberspace.

Mr Gbanite noted that the terrorists have always been in the cyberspace but much attention was not paid to it because getting them “off the ground” had been the priority all the while.

“Look Boko Haram has intelligence, they have brilliant people working with laptops taking money from banks, financing their operations. It is just that we need to migrate to that fight.

“But do we have enough intelligence and commitment to fight the war in the cyber? That is another question. Is the military funded to take this war into the cyberspace?

“They (terrorists) have proven that they can hack into any system in this country and show private documents of any Nigerian to the media and pretend it is an expose or investigative journalism.

“So it is proper for the Nigerian military to look into this. It is an innovation and part of the new development all over the world.”

In analyzing the gains in Nigeria’s fight against terrorism, Mr Gbanite acknowledged the improvement since the appointment of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen Tukur Buratai.

He recalled that the situation was bad enough to force the then Nigerian government to postpone the 2015 general elections but a more determined effort; new strategies and operational activities, have led to the improvement.

New Strategies

Mr Gbanite agreed with the claims by the military that it has succeeded in ensuring that the Boko Haram have become unable to lay claims to holding any Nigerian territories.

“We no longer see Boko Haram taunting our military. Our military have become the hunters and Boko Haram have become on the run,” he said, commending the rescue of several captives of the terrorists.

However, the implication of the success, according to the counter-terrorism expert is that the insurgents have also devised new approaches to their operations and this requires that Nigeria also changes tactics.

“Boko Haram is like a chameleon, they have gone back to asymmetry.

“They have developed new shaheeds. A shaheed is a suicide bomber. So we must attack their mindsets, we must change the narratives to degrade the recruitment of shaheeds in the Boko Haram,” he said.

He called on the media to further support the efforts of the security agencies by making their platforms available to publish the names and faces of suspected terrorists.

He also expressed hope that the newly appointed Acting Inspector-General of Police would build on the improvements recorded by former IGP Solomon Arase in the area of intelligence policing.

Nigerian Army Takes War Against Insurgency To Cyber Space

 Nigerian Army war against insurgency The Nigerian Army has announced plans to take the war against insurgency to the nation’s cyber space, saying it believes it will reduce insurgency to its barest minimum.

Addressing a news conference in Abuja on Tuesday ahead of the Nigerian Army Day celebration, the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, said the insurgents, who have been heavily decimated, were engaging in a cyber war in order to discredit the efforts of the Nigerian armed forces.

He said the army remained resolute in fighting the menace of insurgency to a complete halt in order to restore peace and normalcy to the northeast and other parts of Nigeria.

The statement by the Army Chief is coming a day after two suicide bombers detonated their explosive devices near a mosque in Sulemanti, Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State, in northeast Nigeria.

The Borno State police command explained that the suspects strapped with Improvised Explosive Devices targeted the mosque.

According to the Police command, the bombs went off prematurely, killing the two suspects during the midnight Ramadan prayers.

A Civilian Joint Task Force member said Sulemanti ward and the Central Bank Of Nigeria quarters, South of the metropolis, were porous with no military posts and patrols at the south flank.

FBI Appeals In Chansler Web ‘Sextortion’ Case

chanslerThe FBI has made a public appeal to help identify over 240 victims of a man who used the internet to extort pornographic images from teenage girls.

United States (US) agency says Lucas Michael Chansler, a 31-year-old man, had posed as a teenager to get girls to expose themselves via a webcam and blackmailed them into sending him more explicit images.

Last year, he was sentenced to 105 years in jail after pleading guilty to producing child pornography.

According to reports, so far 109 girls have been identified.

FBI’s Assistant Director, Joseph S. Campbell said, “Sextortion is a growing threat both domestically and internationally.

“The devastating impact of these crimes on the victims, their families, and friends cannot be ignored,” he added.

Chansler had targeted teenage girls in 26 US states, three Canadian provinces and the United Kingdom (UK).

He had admitted he used social sites to chat with girls who ranged in age from 13 to 18, saying that adults were “too smart” to fall for his scheme.

U.S. Computer Hacker Gets Three-and-a-half Years For Stealing iPad User Data

A computer hacker was sentenced on Monday to three years and five months in prison for stealing the personal data of about 120,000 Apple Inc iPad users, including big-city mayors, a TV network news anchor and a Hollywood movie mogul.

Andrew Auernheimer, 27, had been convicted in November by a Newark, New Jersey, jury of one count of conspiracy to access AT&T Inc servers without permission, and one count of identity theft.

The sentence imposed by U.S. District Judge Susan Wigenton in Newark was at the high end of the 33- to 41-month range that the U.S. Department of Justice had sought.

Prosecutors had said prison time would help deter hackers from invading the privacy of innocent people on the Internet.

Among those affected by Auernheimer’s activities were ABC News anchor Diane Sawyer, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Hollywood movie producer Harvey Weinstein, prosecutors said.

“When it became clear that he was in trouble, he concocted the fiction that he was trying to make the Internet more secure, and that all he did was walk in through an unlocked door,” U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman said in a statement. “The jury didn’t buy it, and neither did the court in imposing sentence.”

Auernheimer had sought probation. His lawyer had argued that no passwords were hacked, and that a long prison term was unjustified given that the government recently sought six months for a defendant in a case involving “far more intrusive facts.”

The lawyer, Tor Ekeland, said his client would appeal. He said the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act doesn’t clearly define what constitutes unauthorized access.

“If this is criminal, then tens of thousands of Americans are committing computer crimes every other day,” Ekeland said in an interview. “There really was no harm.”

Auernheimer was handcuffed at one point during the sentencing, the lawyer said. He said his client may have been “tweeting” on his phone, and the U.S. marshals took it away.

Ekeland is also a lawyer for Matthew Keys, a deputy social media editor at Thomson Reuters Corp who was suspended with pay on Friday.

Keys was indicted last week in California on federal charges of aiding the Anonymous hacking collective by giving a hacker access to Tribune Co computer systems in December 2010.

The alleged events occurred before Keys began working at the website Reuters.com. Ekeland on Friday said Keys “maintains his innocence” and “looks forward to contesting these baseless charges.

INTERNET TROLL

Prosecutors called Auernheimer a “well-known computer hacker and internet ‘troll,'” who with co-defendant Daniel Spitler and the group Goatse Security tried to disrupt online content and services.

The two men were accused of using an “account slurper” designed to match email addresses with identifiers for iPad users, and of conducting a “brute force” attack to extract data about those users, who accessed the Internet through the AT&T servers.

This stolen information was then provided to the website Gawker, which published an article naming well-known people whose emails had been compromised, prosecutors said.

Spitler pleaded guilty in June 2011 to the same charges for which Auernheimer was convicted, and is awaiting sentencing.

Gawker was not charged in the case. In its original article, Gawker said Goatse obtained its data through a script on AT&T’s website that was accessible to anyone on the Internet. Gawker also said in the article that it established the authenticity of the data through two people listed among the names. A Gawker spokesman on Monday declined to elaborate.

AT&T has partnered with Apple in the United States to provide wireless service on the iPad. After the hacking, it shut off the feature that allowed email addresses to be obtained.