I've been hearing many cases of theft involving people scamming each other by hacking people's bank account and then cart away all the money they have and then disappear, leaving the victim in despair and sorrow. I also learnt that incidents like this occur sometimes due to the victim's ignorance or gullibility, in some other case, it may be due to illiteracy or greediness that opened a doorway for scammer to penetrate such a person and swindle him.
I personally happen to witness one of the cases, ( the first one I ever came close to, other than the ones I hear on radio, read in papers or on the internet, or watch in TV) it was baffling and almost funny ( so to speak ) at the same time that fateful morning.
I was at the ATM stand in one bank in Ibadan, my intention was to withdraw some cash after I might have activated the new ATM card I just collected but I found myself in some kind of very long queue at the ATM stand and so I had to wait. Before me was an old man, probably in his late 70s, in front of him was a lady, I'm her late twenties too; she was the one currently making the transaction at the ATM and as she was done, she turned to leave but the old man in front of me stopped her and asked if she could help him withdraw some cash and she agreed. She withdrew the cash which she handed over to him with an ATM card and then she walked away. The old man walked away too and so I proceeded with my own transaction.
I was about to leave too when the man came back sweating profusely like a rat that fell inside water. He ran towards me, holding his phone in his hand. He began to cry and scream at the same time. Quickly, people on the queue joined with the bank's security personnel compassed him, asking what the problem was. It took plenty of water and some minutes for him to calm down. As he was about to open his mouth to talk, his phone beeped and when he checked, he screamed and began to shout "they are debiting me oh". He explained that after the lady helped him to withdraw, he began to receive debit alerts on his phone. He said he didn't bother to check because he thought they were unnecessary messages but when he finally decided to check, he discovered that almost a million had been withdrawn from his account. He said he was confused and so he ran back here to ask what was happening.
We were all shocked and sorry for the man. No one could explain specifically what was happening but the security demanded for his ATM once the man revealed that the bank where we were all gathered was the bank he uses. When he handed his arm card over to the officers, it turned out that it was not his ATM card. How come then? How did it happen?
How is someone withdrawing from his account, were the thoughts running through everyone's mind and then I remembered the young lady that helped him to withdraw. I spoke out and asked him if he gave his pin code to the girl and he nodded affirmative and it was concluded that the lady had swapped the ATM card after she finished the transaction.. To confirm it, the security officers went into the bank to check the cameras at the ATM stand and when they came back, they confirmed that the girl had swapped the ATM card indeed. Immediately, the bank blocked the old man's account and ATM card from making any further transactions and the police were informed.
The police eventually arrived even though over a million Naira had vanished from the man's account in less than an hour.
We were all sorry for the man, but at the same time, we learnt our lesson too.