ASSESSMENT OF YOUTHS AND INTERNET CRIME IN NIGERIA (A CASE STUDY OF WARRI SOUTH LGA)
1.1 Background to the study
According to techopedia (2016), the
concept intercept crime is any crime or illegal online activity
committed on the internet, through the internet or using the internet.
Internet crime is a strong branch of cybercrime which includes identity
theft, internet scams and cyber net crime as crimes that involve the use
of a computer and networks in its execution.
These crimes are committed on the
internet using the computer as either a tool or a target victim.
According to him there is an alarming spread of internet crimes. Types
of internet crime includes cyber bullying and harassment financial
extortion, internet bomb threats, classified global security data theft,
password trafficking, enterprise trade secret theft, personally data
hacking, copyright violations such as piracy, counterfeit trademarks
illegal weapon trafficking, online child pornography, credit card theft
and fraud, email phishing, domain name hijacking, virus spreading e.t.c.
The contribution of internet to the
development of internet to the development of the nation has been marred
by the evolution of new waves of crime. The internet has also become an
environment where the most lucrative and safest crime thrives. Cyber or
internet crime has come as a surprise and a strange phenomenon that for
now lives with us in Nigeria. Akogwe (2012) noted that with each
passing day, we witness more and more alarming cases of cyber crimes in
Nigeria, with each new case more shocking than the one before.
The youth in every society is of great
importance and concern to that society because they are looked upon as
the leaders of tomorrow. Olaidede and Adewole (2004), observed that a
sizeable number of criminals in Nigeria fall within the youthful age.
The youths at present have discovered different ways of using the
internet in doing different types of criminal activities and these age
brackets are usually found in tertiary institutions in Nigeria. These
internet crimes being committed by youths in Nigeria is currently on the
increase as more youths in Nigeria are becoming aware of the various
activates that can be done on the internet.
Furthermore, Agba (2012) noted
that youths in Nigeria are faced with so many economic challenges such
as poverty, corruption, unemployment e.t.c which further prompt them to
participate in various internet crimes. According to Sesan (2010) a
2007 internet crime report listed Nigeria third in terms of online crime
activity and the prevalence of young Nigerians. Although Mc Connel
(2000), argued that cyber crimes differ from most terrestrial crimes in
four ways which are
They are easy to learn, they require few
resources relative to the potential damage caused, they can be
committed in a junsdiction without being physically present and they are
often not clearing illegal. As such, internet crime has become one of
the major security issues for law enforcement agencies and the world in
Ribadu (2007) stated that most internet
crimes in Nigeria were committed by youths between the ages of twenty
(20) and thirty five (35) years in Southern part of Nigeria. He further
stated that the prominent forms of internet crimes in Nigeria are
cloning of website, false representations, internet purchase and other
e-commerce kind of fraud.
Olugbodi (2010), states that the most
prevalent forms of cyber crimes are website cloning, financial fraud,
identity theft, credit card theft, cyber theft, cyber harassment,
fraudulent electronic mails, cyber laundering and virus/worms/Trojans.
UNESCO (2016) explained that the concept
“youth” is best understood as a period of transition from the
dependence of childhood to adulthood’s independence and awareness of our
interdependence as members of a community. When carrying out its youth
strategy, UNESCO uses different definitions of youth depending on the
context. The UN, for statistical consistency across regions, defines
“youth” as those persons between the ages of 15 and 24 years, without
prejudice to other definitions by members state. The Oxford online
dictionary (2016) further define “youth” as the period between childhood
and adult age.
Crime on the other hand, according to
the Merriam Webster dictionary (2016) is an illegal art for which
someone can be punished by the government. It is the commission of an
act that is for bidden or omission of a duty that is commanded by a
public law which makes the offender liable to punishment by that law.
The main criminal acts attributed to Nigeria youths are internet scam,
While the internet has offered a lot of
platform for useful research purposes and business opportunities, cyber
or internet crimes are world wide problem that is costing countries
billions of dollars. Hasan (2012) asserted that internet crimes in
Nigeria and the rest of the world is usually committed buy youths
between the ages of 18 and 35 years. He further identified urbanization,
unemployment and quest for wealth as the major causes of internet
crimes among youth.
In Nigeria today, numerous internet
assisted crimes are committed daily in various forms such as identity
theft, desktop counterfeiting, internet chat room, cyber harassment,
fraudulent electronic mails, automated teller machine, spoofing,
pornography, piracy, hacking, phishing and spamming. Usually, these
crimes are committed in forms w sending of fraudulent and bogus
financial proposals from cyber criminals to innocent internet users. The
increasing rates of cyber crime in the society have become a strong
threat to Nigeria’s e-commerce growth and has led to ill-reputation
internationally and consequently derived some innocent Nigerians certain
Adeta (2013) describe the menace of
internet crime to have been successful in societies like Nigeria that is
chaotic, where order is scarified and shame no longer exists. Shameful
acts are celebrated and success is redefined as wealth becomes mere
important than the means of obtaining it. Instant wealth is usually
celebrated among Nigerians populace regardless of its sources. Inrfact,
it is usually equated with smartness and never rebuked (Bola, 2009).
However, Laura (2012) opined that
internet crimes among youths has continue to be on the increase in
Nigeria and other developing countries because of weak implementation of
cyber crime laws and inadequate equipped law agencies. African
countries have been frequently criticized for dealing inadequately with
internet crimes as their law enforcement agencies are inadequately
equipped in terms of personnel, intelligence and infrastructure e.t.c.
Conclusively, defamation of
image, slow production time and add to over head cost, reduction in
competitive edge of organizations are some of the effects of internet
crimes (Hasan, 2012). These effects does not only affects the youths of
the nation but also gives a bad image to the nation as a whole. Adequate
laws and law enforcement agencies must be put in place to effectively
combat this criminal act that seems to be destroying the country’s image
on the international scene.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Since the information technology
revolution began, law enforcement has faced the growing problem of
internet crime. These internet crimes which ranges from credit card
fraud, spoofing/phishing, identify theft to cyber stalking, and computer
crimes e.t.c are mostly crimes committed by youth. This activities by
the youths has made them ignore the African value of dignity in labour
as most youth are infected with the get rich quick syndrome.
The participation on internet crime by
the Nigeria youths has led to the falling standards of our international
reputation because everyone wants to get rich at all cost (Dafe, 2015).
With each passing day, we witness more and more alarming cases of
internet crime. The strain of these internet crimes now imposes on the
Nigerian economy and e-commerce.
Furthermore, Meke (2012) noted that the
menace of internet crime have thrived more in Nigeria in the last twenty
(20) years, thereby making the international community to regard
Nigeria as one of the most corrupt places in the world due to its
inability to tackle such crimes. This study tends to look at the youths
and internet crimes in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta State.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
This study hopes to give an
understanding as well as examine the youths and internet crime in Warri
South Local Government Area of Delta State. The objectives of this study
- To determine the various internet crimes committed by youths in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta State.
- To examine the causes of internet crimes among youths in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta State.
- To examine the effect of internet crimes
- To examine the control measures of internet crimes in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta State.
1.4 Research Questions
To examine the youths and internet
crimes in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta State, the
following research questions were formulated
- What are the various internet crimes committed by youths in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta Stat?
- What are the causes of internet crimes among youths in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta State?
- What are the effects of internet crimes?
- What are the control measures of internet crimes among youths in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta State?
1.5 Research Hypothesis
The following research hypothesis were formulated for this study
Ho1 There is no significant relationship between internet and fraudulent activities
Ho2 There is no significant relationship between electronic funds transfer and crime rate through the internet
Ho3 There is no significant relationship between quest for wealth and fraudulent activities.
1.6 Significance of the Study
The research work will be of great
importance to the students of sociology department, internet service
providers, Nigerian government officials and students in other related
The study will also help the government
to appraise the situation in the state. Consequently, the result of this
investigation will provide useful information to students who may
engage in similar research in the nearest future. It will also add to
the already existing literature in the subject matter.
1.7 Scope of the study
The scope of this study focuses on
youths and internet crimes in Warri South Local Government Area of Delta
State. Efforts will be made in examing the causes and effects on
internet crimes among youths in Warri South Local Government Area of
The study will also give a broader view
on the various internet crimes committed by youths in Warri South Local
Government Area of Delta State.
1.8 Limitation of the Study
This study was limited by different
constraints which prevented the researcher from enlarging the scope of
the study. the study was limited by different constraints such as funds
and time. The limitation of the study facilitated the use of a sample
size for the entire study. The study would have been more productive if
it had not been handicapped by founds and other resources needed for a
through work to be done.
1.9 Operational Definition of Terms
- Internet: It is the global networking of
interconnected computers that permits individual users to share
information along multiple channels.
- Internet Crime: Crimes that involves the use of a computer and networks in its execution
- Youth: The found of transformation from the dependence of childhood to adulthood independence
- Crime: An illegal act for which someone can be punished by the government
- Cyber Crime: This is broadly used to describe
criminal activity in which computers or network are a tool, a target or a
place of criminal activity, a new type of white-collar crime
facilitated by technological advance.
- Hacking: This is a crime which entails creaking systems and gaining unauthorized access to data stored in them
- Cyber Space: This is a collective noun for the divergence rand of environments that have arises using the internet and the various services
- Phishing: This is just one of the frauds on the
internet, trying to fool people into parting with their money. It refers
to the receipt of unsolicited emails by customers of financial
institutions, requesting them to enter their user name, password or
other personal information to access their account for some reason.