The advent of internet technology in 1970, the birth of World Wide Web (WWW) technology in 1989 and the launched of yet another hierarchically organized oracle popularly known as Yahoo in 1995 transformed fraudulent activities from traditional isolated events to precipitous number of people who can be scammed at scale through the digital technology.
However, as the scope of digital technology advances, the wide acceptance and number of social media network users is also increasing, thus, the number of fraudsters and atrocities they commit day in day out is also at alarming rate, thereby causing a havoc throughout the world.
Since the launch of internet technology which the so called social media networks rely upon, a lot of technological transformation has also taken place over the past three decades, an instance is a shift from static web and personal sites usually known as web 1.0 era to social media and interactive era called web 2.0 and finally now, the talk of the town, web 3.0, an era of block chain technology which crypto currency, internet of things, artificial technology among others rely upon.
Despite a lot of benefits attached with this digital transformation, yet there exist a lot of disadvantages, a typical example is the rate of increase in cyber crime each time a new technology is on the ground. Some of the scams which have evolved overtime are discussed below.
Scamming Through Email Phishing
Email phishing can be regarded as one of the first digital scam ever, the practice became common around 1990-2000, the launched of Yahoo inc. in 1995 serves as an added advantage to the scammers. Email phishing is the process whereby scammers imitate a reputable organization through the use of a look alike website, email messaging or any other related methods in order to thieve sensitive information such as credit card information, bio data among others which could be used as an instrument to scam the users.
Website hackers, password theft malicious and spyware software among others were also been used as online scam tools after the launch of internet.
Scamming Through Application Download
As technology advances, an advent introduction of I phone, Apple phone, Android phone among other user friendly mobile devices led to the creation of various mobile applications which needed to be downloaded online before it can be used, thus, most of the time, these applications always request users to supply his/her information before such an app could be downloaded, many scammers have been found of manipulating their ways into some of these applications by launching a malware which will steal users information before downloading such an applications. Scammers also used to create a like fashion of the application to be downloaded in other to carry out their malicious attack
Scamming Through Social Media Naetwork
Nowadays, many of us solely rely on social medias for our daily activities, such as business deal, relationship, online class among others, hardly you will find anybody that does not have one or more social media handling, however, despite its huge advantages yet many people are misusing it, as such making it a target to be used by scammers to get vital information from the users. Fake friends who will act as being real and use the avenue to extort the users are common nowadays, some scammers also get to used to the use of 'Juju' (Africa magic) to extort the users.
Scamming through Online Gaming and Gambling Application
Many people are fond of playing game and gambling online, thus, these applications always prompting them to enter their account details in order to make payment, scammers use the opportunity to thieve sensitive information such as password and sensitive data theft. The recent fake Pokemon Go update which took almost £12.99 from every of its successful victims is one of the examples of how scammers carry out their operation through gaming and gambling avenue.
Scamming Through E-commerce and Online Trading Website
Nowadays, we buy and trade products online, thereby entering our account details via websites has become the order of the day, scammers considered it as an opportunity also to steal sensitive information, especially users account information, either through the use of malware or creating a look alike website with related domain name of the original and intended e-commerce website and manipulate their way to the users account.
Scamming Through Hidden URLS
Hidden URLS are common nowadays, especially in some of the cryptocurrency platforms, scammers will just send you a short link (urls) which hide exact location of the website page, they are also common on Twitter among other social media app. What it does is to direct you to a website page that will install malware software on your system and thief your information, especially your username and password of the account on the site you click the link from.
User’s account takeover online payment system through Authorized Push Payments (APP) method, New account fraud, Transaction fraud and Synthetic identity fraud among others have been regarded among the recent scamming methods through the use of social media network.
Having considered a critical analysis of the evolution of these digitized fraudulent activities called cyber crime since the birthed of internet and social media network, thus, this will provide a better opportunity towards establishing the state of the art in cyber crime space and the strategies that should be put on ground in order to curb it.
In this article, we have considered and discussed some of the most digital methods being used by scammers to carry out their fraudulent activities. others which I did not mention here use a related techniques to the one mentioned here. Only few are different.
An attempt should be made always to avoid being caught by the scammers who have no other jobs than stealing someone else information that could harm him/her.
Thanks for reading through and I hope my treatise will be of great benefit to the community at large. Your contribution matters a lot.