By Abimbola Ogunnaike
US secretary of State, Micheal Pompeo, made this disclosure in a statement published on the department of state’s website on Tuesday.
Pompeo said the victims were defrauded through the use of sensitive information and financial resources derived by manipulative means which will not be tolerated.
The Nigerians listed were identified as Benson Orson, Kayode Abiola, Ogunshakin Alex, Okpoh Felix, Olorunyomi Micheal, Uzuh Richard.
Their names were also included in the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) specially designated nationals list, under the section of “cyber-related designation”.
“Technological advancements that provide greater interconnectivity also offer greater opportunity for exploitation by malicious actors who target at-risk Americans,” the statement read.
“Today, in coordination with the US Department of Justice, the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control took action against six Nigerian nationals, pursuant to Executive Order 13694 as amended, for conducting an elaborate online scheme to steal more than $6 million from victims across the United States,” Pompeo said.
According to him, the six Nigerians manipulated their victims to gain access to their sensitive information and financial resources.
Pompeo added that the US will henceforth not tolerate such gross misuse of technology.
“The U.S will use all of the tools at our disposal to defend the American citizens and businesses from malign actors that seek to target them, including cyber-enabled actors who prey on vulnerable Americans and businesses,” the statement added.
It would be recalled that Popular Instagram celebrity, Raymond Igbalodely a.k.a. Hushpuppi was arrested in Dubai for allegedly hacking into the United States (US) unemployed database and defrauding citizens of millions meant for native Americans in the battle against COVID-19.
Interpol, speaking on his arrest, said Hushpuppi will be extradited from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to Nigeria to face alleged multiple fraud charges.