The Forum of Spokespersons of Security and Response Agencies (FOSSRA) has issued a warning over the increasing activities of swindlers that engage the use of unverified websites and fake social media platforms to defraud unsuspecting public and spread false information.
At the end of its monthly meeting which was held at the weekend in Nigeria Customs Headquarters Abuja, the Chairman of the Forum, Major General Chris Olukolade noted that most victims of the swindlers were applicants that are often tricked into paying money under the guise of getting employment in return.
The other common victims include buyers and intending investors
While urging relevant institutions including regulatory bodies and security agencies to intensify efforts in curtailing the excesses of the internet scammers and online fraudsters, the forum warned the public to be wary of enticing and unbelievable offers by verifying claims on social media platforms and emails.
While acknowledging the fact that many arrests and convictions have been made, the forum also appealed to commercial banks to cooperate with the concerned authorities in arresting the ugly trends since the swindle monies are mostly paid through bank accounts.
Citing instances of multiple fake social media platforms often created in the names of public agencies and officials, the Forum said those were some of the ploys used by the fraudsters to confuse the public. It added that “public information are always issued with verifiable sources while such agencies would normally not request any payment either for employment or services through the social media.”
In his Opening address, the Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Alhaji Dikko Abdullahi who was represented by the Deputy Comptroller General, Finance Administration, Mr John Atte urged the forum to sustain the existing synergy in the management of public information, especially in the light of the present global security challenges.
Also in his remarks, the Spokesperson of the Nigeria Customs Service, Wale Adeniyi stated that the Nigeria Customs Service has approved new Social Media Policy that would guide online visitors on the activities of the agency and protect them against the increasing antics of online fraudsters.
FOSSRA is a body under the auspices of Office of National Security Adviser that coordinates public information activities of armed forces, security and response agencies. Its members are spokespersons of Defence Headquarters, Army, Airforce, Navy, Police, Office of National Security Adviser (ONSA), National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Department of State Services(DSS/SSS),Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Nigeria Prisons Service (NPS), Nigeria Immigrations Service (NIS), Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), National Emergency Management Agencies (NEMA) and Federal Fire Service.