By Musa Sunusi Ahmad
The Nigerian Communications Communication (NCC) has warned telecommunications consumers against electronic frauds.
NCC spokesperson Ikechukwu Adinde gave the warning in a statement issued to journalists.
Mr Adinde noted a rise in fraudulent telephone calls to unsuspecting consumers.
He said the crime is known as vishing.
“Vishing is a form of Phishing which is punishable under Section 32 of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention etc.) Act of 2015.
“These increasingly popular incidents typically start with a phone call from fraudsters requesting the call receiver to perform a certain task for the caller, which will enable the caller (usually part of a wider network of syndicates) to swiftly takeover the social media account of an individual or group.
“Consequently, the Commission wishes to inform the general public that such calls and antics, are initiated and carried out by unscrupulous persons, usually with the intent to defraud unsuspecting citizens and or commit other heinous crimes,” Mr Adinde stated.
He observed that when a receiver follows the directions given by such callers, the social media account of the receiver would be taken over by the caller.
“They may then proceed as impostors, soliciting funds from and/or enticing friends of their victims into fraudulent business transactions in order to swindle them.” He said.
The spokesperson added that NCC has posted a recording of a fraudulent call on its Twitter handles @ngcomcommission or @consumersncc to educate the public on how the fraudsters operate.
Mr Adinde assures consumers that NCC is investigating all numbers used in fraudulent calls and will take legal action against the callers.
He however advised consumers to use security measures to protect their online activities.
He also urged consumers to protect their online account information from unknown callers posing as representatives of credible organizations.
Mr Adinde warned that cybercrimes such as Voice Phising and SMS Phishing are likely to increase due to increase in internet usage.
He therefore appealed to all telecom consumers to forward complaints on suspected fraudulent calls to the NCC via its email, firstname.lastname@example.org.