Sunday, August 1, 2021

How fraudsters hacked into our site, diverted over N10m – JAMB

FRAUDSTERS who hacked into the site of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board have hijacked over N10million, meant to be paid to ad-hoc staff of the Board, into their accounts.

The scam was uncovered after the board undertook a thorough investigation, which led to the arrest of one Sahabi Zubairu from Takum in Taraba State, among others.

The fraudsters, who perpetrated the act were said to have altered the profiles of the Board’s ad hoc staff, and diverted the money meant for their allowances.

Registrar, JAMB, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, who disclosed this to journalists on Wednesday in Abuja, said for this reason, and others, the use of email would no longer be required for JAMB’s registration exercise.

While noting that only mobile phones would henceforth be required to register for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination and Direct Entry, he said the new system was to prevent candidates’ information from being exposed to dubious cyber cafe operators and other criminal elements.

He said Government policy required that monies meant for ad-hoc staff were paid directly into the accounts of the beneficiaries.

He expressed disappointment at the failure of the Account Department of the Board to detect the fraud by cross-checking the names on the accounts to ensure that they tallied with those listed on the website or owners of the codes.

Oloyede, however, said the ad-hoc staff of the Board had since been paid, promising that the stolen money would be recovered.

He also vowed to hand perpetrators of the crime over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for further investigation and prosecution.

On how the fraudsters accessed the profiles of the ad-hoc staff, the JAMB boss said they used key logger, a software that allowed access to the profile of anyone who had logged in using a public cybercafé even after the person had logged out and left.

Oloyede said one of the suspected fraudsters, Zubairu, deleted the names of the original ad hoc staff and their telephone numbers and substituted them with his.

The Board paraded 10 of the scammers at its headquarters, in Bwari, Abuja, who all admitted committing the crime. They however said they were lured into the act by Zubairu.

Zubairu, on his part, said his friend, who he identified as Samuel Tanko, now at large, introduced him to the website and supplied him with a code to apply as a JAMB ad hoc staff.

He said this was when they met at Saltee Cybercafé in Takum, his area of residence.

He, however, said he did not apply but only successfully altered the account details and phone numbers of the original owners of the code listed on the site, who were posted across the country by JAMB.

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