This sort of scam can take a few forms, and 3 of them will be covered in this article. You should know that, ordinarily, Facebook allows people to change their location. So, it is not farfetched for a Nigerian or a citizen of any other country to change their profile picture, change their location and profile, and take up the identity of a completely different person.
Facebook has been one of the platforms that have bridged the gap between the countries. While it facilitates the good, it also enables the bad. Here are the 3 major forms that a Nigerian Facebook scam will take.
1. Facebook friendship and group scams
How many of you are on Facebook? How many of you are in that weight loss Facebook group? How many are in the keto group? How about that adult coloring group?
It turns out that people who have bad intent can just as well join those groups and try to build trust with multiple people over time and attempt to be their friends. I will give you an example.
So, let’s say you are in that adult coloring group. Then there is this profile who is always answering questions. In fact, the same person might say they want to give out a 5-page coloring book for free, and all you have to do is to chat with them privately.
From this private chat that they get that initial contact with you, they will claim to fall in love, and before you know it, you will begin sending them money for things. I don’t wish to go over this here as I have already covered that in another link. More on that in the link below.
So, you might be feeling that you are immune to scams because you are not on a dating site, but you could be completely wrong.
So, it could also happen that a scammer is impersonating your friend in order to obtain money from you. The phishing thing works when a scammer is trying to get you to input your login details on a fake Facebook website.
It normally starts when a scammer sends someone you are friends with on Facebook a message. This message could say that the person’s Facebook password has expired and they need to change it. They will then be required to enter both their old and new passwords on a fake site.
Once they do this, the scammer will take over their Facebook account.
The next phase of this operation is that the scammer finds the close friends of the person whose account was stolen. They would use the victim’s account to chat with the victim’s friends. They would tell the friends that the victim is sick and needs money for surgery; or that the victim needs a new phone; or that the victim is in an emergency.
The whole idea is to come up with something convincing that will make the victim’s friends send money to a Western Union or MoneyGram account. Oh by the way, the scammers like Western Union or MoneyGram a lot. This is because refunding such money is close to impossible.
3. The Nigerian Prince Scam
Well, this sort of scam is more commonly used in countries like Bangladesh or India, and I will make a separate blog post to discuss that. The scammer, who may be a Nigerian, takes up the identity of a European or American on Facebook and initiates virtual friendship with unsuspecting women.
They build trust with these women over time and that sets them up for the swindle. It should be noted that, in most cases, women who are around the age of getting married are usually targeted for this scam. They promise them marriage, and in these countries, marriage is really a huge deal.
As time went on, this foreign husband would tell the woman that he wanted to send her some goods from his country. When the supposed goods arrived in the woman’s country, she received a phone call from a customs official who instructed her to pay money for the huge shipment.
This sort of scam is usually perpetrated in such a way that the victim has little time to think. And as a general rule, if they are hurrying you up, you should be careful and be suspicious.
So our victim sends the customs money some cash, sometimes even going as far as borrowing money to clear the goods with the hope that she will be rich once the goods reach her hand. She could have asked the husband to clear the goods, but it will be around this time that he suddenly has some financial difficulties and doesn’t have enough cash. He himself will urge her to take a loan as the goods he sent will more than cover the amount she borrows.
But of course, the goods never show up.