YOUTH PARTICIPATION IN SOCIAL MEDIA FRAUD; PROBLEMS, EFFECT AND SOLUTION
1.1 Background of the Study
The invention of electronic devices such as modern communication hard-wares, internet service and computer systems has been a major landmark in human history. Ayantokun (2006), defined computer as a machine that performs tasks, such as calculation or electronic communication, under the control of a set of instructions called a program. Programs usually reside within the computer and are retrieved and processed by the computer’s electronics. The program results are stored or routed to output devices, such as video display monitors or printers. Oyewole and Obeta (2002), define a computer as an electronic device that accepts, processes, stores and outputs data at high speed according to programmed instructions. Computers perform a wide variety of activities reliably, accurately and quickly depending on the purpose it was designed for. Computer can be used in areas of education, medicine, engineering design, scientific research, office automation, personal administration etc (Morley and Parker, 2007).
According to Rogers (1995), the rapid evolution of the computer brought the internet. The internet services have reduced the world into a global village which makes it look as if everybody is in the same place at a particular point in time. Aside the fact that the internet has made communication to be easier and faster, a lot of other transactions are consummated at the speed of lightening. Oyewole and Obeta (2002), state that the internet is the inter connection of computer across the world thereby creating unlimited opportunities for mankind. Ehimen and Bola (2009), state that cyberspace has provided a save haven for internet platform, which has created geometric growth and accelerated windows of opportunities for businesses and the removal of economic barriers hitherto faced by nations of the world. People from diverse areas of human endeavor can now freely access and utilize the advantages offered by internet platform. In addition, Young Media Association (2007), listed the following as the positive gain the internet has brought to the world:
Facilitation of job search and employment.
Accessibility to research information for education and businesses.
Enhancement of trade and commerce.
Sharing of resources and ideas.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The contribution of internet to the development of the nation has been marred by the evolution of a new wave of crime. The internet has also become an environment where the most lucrative and safest crimes thrive. There are indications that social media fraud is rising. For example, a 2005 YouGov poll of UK Internet users found that 1 in 20 had lost money in online scams. Also a 2001 survey revealed that 52 per cent of companies interviewed said internet fraud posed real problems for them (Wall, 2007). These are clear indications that social media fraud is on the increase and as such, it is beginning to gain recognition at the global level and there is dearth of study in the area of this burgeoning criminal act in Nigeria.
Technology has integrated nations and the world has become a global village. The economy of most nations in the world is accessible through the aid of electronic via the internet. Since the electronic market is opened to everybody (which includes eavesdroppers and criminals), false pretence find a fertile ground in this situation. Vladimir (2005), said the internet is a global network which unites millions of computer located in different countries and open broad opportunities to obtain and exchange information but it is now being used for criminal purposes due to economic factors. Nigeria, a third world country is faced with so many economic challenges such as unemployment amongst others, which are capable of making this crime thrive. Apart from the economy factor been a possible cause of social media fraud in Nigeria, there might be other causes for the continued rise in social media fraud activity.