The only way to avoid being duped/419ed anywhere is to rein in your greed because, really, greed is the major reason people get duped. I mean, how will someone approach you with a story of “just bring N10,000 for taxi fare and you’ll get N1m when the deal pulls through” and you’ll fall for it?
What about jazz aka juju one might want to ask? I believe that jazz works with your greed too. There has to be something for the jazz to hook on to. You can disagree.
I read a news story of a Nigerian guy in Vietnam who got $7,000 from a number of Vietnamese women on Facebook by flirting with them and promising expensive gifts. The catch was the women had to pay a clearing fee to his partner in crime – posing as a customs agent – to get the gifts. His targets? Single women.
Nigerians are also getting duped, but you rarely hear the stories because who wants to admit such a stupid mistake. Can you imagine your friends’ faces when you tell them, “there was this chick I met on Facebook and she turned out to be 419, duped me of 100k?” So the stories are rarely told.
- Be careful who you accept as friends. Some people see a friend request and click accept without doing any background check. It’s as simple as a Google search or a visit to the person’s timeline. Watch out for timelines with only links posted, incomplete sentences, and anything remotely suspicious. Names can be a giveaway also. Delicious Candy, Magnolia Sexy, RippedandHunky Giant, etc etc
- Change your Facebook privacy settings such that only friends can see your posts when they visit your wall. No matter how careful you are, you give away a lot of information about yourself on Facebook: pictures, life events, achievements and so on.
- Your inbox should be set to block messages from people who are not your friends; it might be a pain because you end up missing some messages. But it’s better to be safe.
- Love conquers all, yeah yeah. Before you embark on that Facebook romance and start exchanging phone numbers and ATM pins, make sure someone you know in person knows your love interest.
- Bad grammar is another giveaway. There seems to be a format for these things, which makes me wonder how people keep falling victim. No matter how pretty the face or ripped the muscles, if she can’t spell the most basic words, be careful. Even if English isn’t her first language. That’s what Google translate is for.
- Sadly, there’s no cure for greed.
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