Identity, Recruitment and Initiation Ceremony of Youth into Cybercrime in Metropolitan Lagos

Tuesday, 17 July 2018: 09:22
Oral Presentation
Adedeji OYENUGA, Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos, Nigeria., Nigeria
Adeyinka ADERINTO, University of Ibadan, Nigeria
The increasing accessibility to the Internet is marred by new waves of crime such as website cloning. Although, there have been studies on cybercrime, the traits and recruitment system for youth involved have remained largely unexplored. The study adopted diffusion of innovation, globalisation, differential association and space transition theories. The study design was exploratory involving the use of qualitative methods of data collection. Four localities with preponderance of cybercrime in Lagos State were purposively selected: Surulere, Ikotun, Badagry and Bariga. Data were collected from youth involved in cybercrime (guided referral method), officials of Economic and Financial Crime Commission, Nigeria Police and cybercafé managers through In-depth Interviews, Case studies, and Key Informant Interviews. Through participant observation, youth involved in cybercrime were interacted with repeatedly over a period of five years to understand frequency on the Internet, online behaviours and offline activities. The data were content analysed. Cybercrime has local names that correlate with the language of youth involved in cybercrime. Youth involved in cybercrime were mostly identified with pseudonyms such as Package Boys, Apako Master and Mighty. They often have physiological traits like hardened fingertips and end of palms and they dress excessively, adorned with jewelry. Recruitments into cybercrime were purely voluntary, but the initiation ceremony is a 6-stage process that includes Adaptation, Familiarisation, Integration, Independence, Collaboration and Identification.Youth involved in cybercrime evolved distinct traits and were sustained by the sophistication of both the Internet and cybercrime in Lagos State, Nigeria.