Cybercrime: Regulator alerts consumers to ‘Davido Airtime and Data Give Away’ scam

*The Nigerian Communications Commission cautions telecoms consumers against falling prey to a group of scammers out with a promo advertorial titled, ‘Davido Airtime and Data Giveaway’

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

In a swift move to ensure consumer protection against cybercrime, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has said it discovered while undertaking online social listening, that an ostensibly syndicated group is on the prowl to swindle unsuspecting members of the public, especially millions of Nigerian telecoms consumers, by capitalising on the generosity of Mr. David Adedeji Adeleke, a Nigerian artiste widely known as ‘Davido’.

The Nigerian-American music star, songwriter and producer recently announced he would donate N250million to various orphanage homes across he country.

Mr. David Adedeji Adeleke, Nigerian artiste, widely known as ‘Davido’

Accordingly, in exploiting Davido’s benevolence, a group of scammers rolled out an advertorial titled, “Davido Airtime and Data Giveaway”, which went viral, claiming that the artiste is “giving out free 5K Airtime and 10GB Internet data of All Networks” to celebrate his birthday.

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The country’s telecoms regulatory Commission noted that in the advertorial, the general public is urged to hurry and get the gift by clicking on the links that supposedly redirect them to network sites where they will be credited with airtime and data.

Dr. Ikechukwu Adinde, Director of Public Affairs at NCC, in a statement issued Tuesday, November 23, 2021, in Abuja, FCT, however, warned consumers and said “this is a scam.”

The statement noted: “The NCC wishes to advise our teeming telecom consumers to have nothing to do with the advert or any similar bogus enticements.

“The adverts are what they are – social engineering rip-offs, designed to get people’s MSISDN and other information that fraudsters can use later to defraud unsuspecting telecom consumers and members of the public.”

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Adinde stated for the sake of clarity, the MSISDN is simply the full phone number of a cellphone, in addition to other protocol information.

“This number is unique and identifies subscribers/owners in a GSM or other mobile networks.

“Therefore, it suffices to state that any unscrupulous person or unethical hacker can use the number and attendant protocol to undermine the privacy of the real owners of the number through identity theft and other scams,” he said.

The Commission also reiterated its earlier warning to telecoms consumers to be cautious and not to let their guards down.

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“If a promo or an offer seems too good to be true, then it is likely untrue,” NCC warned.

The regulator, therefore, assured Nigerians that it would not rest on its oars in empowering telecoms consumers with the requisite information and education in order to protect them from cybercriminals determined to use the telecoms platforms to perpetrate frauds in the country.

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