‘Sakawa boys’: Meet the professional internet fraudsters of Ghana
Fraud Protection

‘Sakawa boys’: Meet the professional internet fraudsters of Ghana

I am sitting in an internet cafe near Kwame Nkrumah circle in Accra, Ghana. It is nearly 2am on a weekday. The clicking noise created by many people typing at the same time sounds like rain falling on the roof. With your eyes closed, you could easily believe that you are in a business premises. But this couldn't be further from the case.

This is one of many hubs of internet fraudsters (known as 'Sakawa boys' in Ghana and 'Yahoo boys' in Nigeria). A group of young men sit nonchalantly in front of computer screens. The silence in the room is occasionally disturbed by chatting among the guys as they peruse through pictures and chat online with their victims, who are referred to as “clients” or “mugu.”

Internet fraud has become immensely popular in Ghana, Nigeria, and many other West African countries. It has even inspired movies, songs and catchphrases. There are many reasons for this. First, scores of young people are unemployed in the region. Also, the virtual world is still like the Wild Wild West with barely any effective legal controls and restrictions.

 

Jude – US ambitions thwarted

Twenty-six years old Jude is a Nigerian national, and he is involved in internet fraud. He has been living in Ghana for about five years now. He tells me that he moved to Ghana in a bid to travel to the US. But with his plans of going abroad at a standstill, he turned to internet fraud.

To continue reading...


Please login or register to view your article. If you do not have or do not remember your password, please click on the “Forgotten your password?” link at the bottom.
If you do not yet have a password but are an existing user, please use the “Forgotten your password?

PREVIOUS ARTICLE

«InfoShot: Bitcoin energy consumption

NEXT ARTICLE

Free vs. open source software – what’s the difference?»
K.O. Peppeh

K.O. Peppeh is a professional journalist and freelance writer from Ghana, West Africa. He is part of a new generation of writers leveraging technology to develop a new, powerful voice for the African continent.

Add Your Comment

Most Recent Comments

Our Case Studies

IDG Connect delivers full creative solutions to meet all your demand generatlon needs. These cover the full scope of options, from customized content and lead delivery through to fully integrated campaigns.

images

Our Marketing Research

Our in-house analyst and editorial team create a range of insights for the global marketing community. These look at IT buying preferences, the latest soclal media trends and other zeitgeist topics.

images

Poll

If it were legal, would your organization hack back?