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419 scam hits Kenya

October 7, 2008 • Security, Software

Kenyans have not been spared by cyber crooks, an increase in fraud has been witnessed and the victims have lost heavily.

The East Africans have seen a surging e-mail and computer fraud in the financial services sector, seeing their bank balances emptied and savings wiped out in electronic scams.

Business Daily said world figures show financial service fraud is at its highest level, accounting for more than 90 per cent of computer rip-offs, as fraudsters use computer viruses and e-mail campaigns to track down banking codes and balances.

Several Kenyan banks have suffered attacks, but the greater risk in Kenya is proving to be e-mail campaigns, sent, purportedly, by the banks themselves.

Internet scams are nothing new, but developing countries with new internet users are offering scammers a whole new pool of fresh victims.
The Nigerian 419 scam is the cockroach of e-mail scams. It survives, no matter what. The best antidote is informed consumers, using the bright light of skepticism and knowledge. That’ll send those bugs scrambling into their dark corners.
How it works: The number of e-mail scams still using the Nigerian government is amazing. In one of the latest, wise We’ve Got Your Back reader Jay found a message from ”Anthony Duke, chairman of the Foreign Payment Unit” of the Nigerian government. Clicking on the links provided in the e-mail could lead to installation of malware and a steady stream of more harassing e-mails, looking to separate you from your money. (The 419 refers to a section of the Nigerian crimes code.) Some readers report getting e-mail from various African senders who want to share their estates with you before they die. No they don’t.

What to do: Never click on the links inside e-mail from sources you don’t know. Don’t fall for come-ons in which the sender urges you to act quickly. They don’t want you to have much time to think. There’s so many of these, Scambusters reports that a Nigerian government official criticized the scam’s victims, calling them greedy.
By ITnewsAfrica.com Reporter

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