“These groups are well structured in terms of command and control, and a typical example is a case where we arrested some people at Ablekuma which had a well-structured group”.
Executive Director of the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO), COP Maame Tiwaa Addo-Danquah, has said most cyber crime groups in the country are organised and well-structured in command and control.
According to her, most of the cyber crime groups in Ghana have people known as facilitators within organisations such as banks and telecommunication companies that help them undertake cyber crime related activities.
Speaking at the First National Bank Fraud Forum which marks the bank’s 2022 Fraud Awareness Week, COP Maame Tiwaa Addo-Danquah said, ”These groups are well structured in terms of command and control, and a typical example is a case where we arrested some people at Ablekuma which had a well-structured group.
“They had a leader (oga) who was not resident in the jurisdiction where the crime was taking place, then they had elder boys who take instructions from the leader (oga). Then there is the senior boys who supervise over the group of boys in a room that are actually undertaking or committing cyber crime related activities.”
“Then you have some people within the banking sector for instance who will be providing information about customers to these people,” she added.
Touching on what makes the public particularly customers of banks vulnerable to cyber security attacks, COP Maame Tiwaa Addo-Danquah noted, tendency of individuals to click on links which are supposedly offers from banks, telecom companies, weak or easily guessed passwords, among others.
“What I will say is that some of us wherever we get to, we are looking for free internet access, wherever we run out of battery we get anywhere we leave our phones on charge and then we leave. Some most of us are checking our mails on our phones and some of them are just using passwords that can easily be guessed like date of birth and first names and so forth.
“Also we want to open anything we see on our phones and other devices especially when they are supposed offers from organisations like telcos and banks. These links or offers have installed keyloggers which cyber criminals can use to gain access to relevant information on your phones and devices
“So we need to be mindful of those things, because they are the vary things that make us vulnerable,” she remarked.
Speaking further, she urged organisations such as banks, telcos that have important data and information about customers to acquire and onboard platforms that have in place strong cyber security settings and firewalls to reduce the number of cyber crime related cases to the barest minimum.
Per the 2022 Occupational Fraud Report, organisations across the world lose about 5% of gross annual revenue to cyber fraud related activities.
The Fraud Forum held by First National Bank, sought to shine light on the modus operandi of fraudsters and provide guidance as well as educate the public on how to navigate the incidence of fraud and cyber crime.