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AN ASSESSMENT OF SOCIAL FACTORS INFLUENCING YOUTH INVOLVEMENT IN YAHOO-YAHOO IN NIGERIA

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AN ASSESSMENT OF SOCIAL FACTORS INFLUENCING YOUTH INVOLVEMENT IN YAHOO-YAHOO IN NIGERIA

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

  1. Background of the study

Cybercrime has become an inherent component of contemporary civilization, including a sophisticated web of unidentified offenders. Identifying and controlling this threat is a significant and challenging international undertaking (Adekunle, 2019). McAfee's cybersecurity study from 2019 revealed that cybercrime caused a staggering loss of over $1 trillion in global GDP. This financial impact was a gradual decline, with the world economy losing $500 million in 2018. According to Okoh (2016), the African cyberspace had a loss of almost 3.5 billion dollars in 2017. Nigeria and Kenya were the countries with the highest losses, amounting to $650.5 million and $210.2 million respectively. This resulted in a total estimated loss of $248 million for financial institutions in Africa, which were particularly vulnerable. The statistical analysis reveals that due to the internet-driven technical change, crimes such as fraud and other financial offences, which were historically difficult to carry out, may now be executed with remarkable ease (Stalans, 2016).

In the current global economy, where individuals are virtually linked across many boundaries, the internet plays a crucial role in linking people, nations, and communities instantaneously. The internet has brought significant changes to transportation, communication, business, and the economy. However, it has also become a refuge for criminals who exploit its anonymity to carry out illegal activities, resulting in annual losses of billions of dollars for individuals, organisations, and governments (Stalans, 2016). Therefore, Tade (2015) contended that those engaging in illegal actions in online, such as cyber terrorism, cyberbullying, and financial fraud, are often known as cybercriminals.

Several research, like Lazarus and Okolorie (2019), have shown that the level of child involvement in Yahoo-Yahoo is concerning. This survey revealed that a significant majority of cybercriminals, often known as Yahoo-Yahoo, are males between the ages of 19 and 26. Additionally, a substantial number of them are enrolled as students in different higher institutions throughout the six geo-political zones of Nigeria. Adekunle (2019) contended that the subculture of yahoo-yahoo is now vying with the dominant culture to such a degree that the actions associated with this practice are often seen by many as "neither morally wrong nor criminal." Additional reasons for participating in this fraudulent activity are sometimes rooted in the desire for quick financial gain, engaging in common hustling practices, or claiming restitution for the riches that was allegedly stolen by white colonial overlords from our ancestors. Prior to the advent of the Internet, the individuals engaging in financial fraud, commonly referred to as "419-ners," operated predominantly in major Nigerian cities like Lagos and Abuja. These fraudsters, regardless of their level of education, were adept at utilising fax machines to deceive both unsuspecting foreigners and Nigerians, ultimately swindling them out of their earned income (Egan, 2020). Nevertheless, in the present era, the circumstances have shifted. The proliferation of technology advancements in social media platforms has led to the widespread involvement of young individuals in the act of deceiving unsuspecting foreigners and Nigerians for fraudulent purposes. The prevalence of social media has transformed the majority of Nigerian youngsters into active participants in financial scams and cybercrimes inside the nation. Currently, on the streets of Nigeria, several young individuals are seen driving very costly automobiles, constructing extravagant residences, and indulging in opulent lives. This phenomenon perplexes the majority of respectable residents and raises concerns over the future of the nation. The researcher therefore sought to assess social factors influencing youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria.

    1. Statement of the problem

The internet and social media have become integral components of the lives of young people worldwide. In Nigeria, particularly in Imo State higher institutions, it is very rare to see a young individual who is not involved in some kind of social media. Nigerians possess a distinct identity that sets them apart from other civilizations, making them distinctive. Prior to the technical advancement that introduced the internet and facilitated the establishment of different social media platforms, Nigerians mostly adhered to traditional values and morals that greatly enhanced their social lives and perspectives (Odo, C.R. and Odo, 2015). The principles of reverence for public property and adherence to the rules of the nation were also widely observed. Regrettably, the moral values, particularly among the younger generation in the nation, have been monopolised by the impact of social media (Ibrahim, 2016). Regrettably, these young individuals live in a culture where values and ethics are rapidly evolving. In a society like Nigeria, characterised by significant structural inequalities, a weak system of punishment, and a wide disparity between the wealthy and the impoverished, there is a propensity for those who are disadvantaged to reject legal methods and instead resort to illegal means in order to attain wealth at a young age. This is driven by factors such as high unemployment rates, poverty, limited access to education, technology, and skills, as well as a perception of injustice and inequality. Furthermore, the pervasive corruption among the ranks of our supposed leaders, politicians, and technocrats has motivated the younger generation to participate in criminal activities as a means to get wealth, as highlighted by Akpan (2016). Hence, the need to assess the social factors influencing youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria.

1.3 Objective of the study

The broad objective of the study is to assess the social factors influencing youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria. The specific objectives is as follows

  1. Examine whether lack of educational opportunities influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria.

  2. Find out whether peer pressure influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria.

  3. Assess whether poverty influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria.

  4. Determine whether unemployment and economic hardship influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria.

  5. Recommend strategies that can be used to curb youths involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria.

1.4 Research Questions

The following questions have been prepared to guide the study

  1. Does lack of educational opportunities influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria?

  2. Does peer pressure influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria?

  3. Does poverty influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria?

  4. Does unemployment and economic hardship influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria?

  5. What are the strategies that can be used to curb youths involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria?

1.5 Significance of the study

The findings of this research aims to assess the social factors influencing youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria. Hence, it will be significant to policy makers and security agencies in Nigeria because state legislation stipulates that engaging in Yahoo-Yahoo or cybercrime is subject to legal penalties. They will be exposed to, how individuals see the practice of Yahoo-Yahoo? In other words, do they see this as a criminal act? What is their perception of the individuals that engage in this behaviour? Do they accept, reject, or remain indifferent towards them? By understanding the public view of Yahoo-Yahoo, we may get valuable insights into the reasons for its prevalence in society.

Hence, this research would be crucial in examining the impact of parental influence on youth's engagement in yahoo-yahoo. Regarding yahoo-yahoo or any sort of illegal activity, the influence of socialisation is crucial as it may publicly endorse or discourage its members from participating in any illicit behaviour.

Furthermore, the findings of the study will be significant to the academic community as it will add to the present library resources in the subject matter.

1.6 Scope of the study

The study focus on social factors influencing youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria. Hence, the study will examine whether lack of educational opportunities influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria, find out whether peer pressure influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria, assess whether poverty influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria, determine whether unemployment and economic hardship influence youth involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria and recommend strategies that can be used to curb youths involvement in yahoo-yahoo in Nigeria. Hence, the study is delimited to Lagos State.

1.7 Limitation of the study

Like in every human endeavour, the researchers encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. Insufficient funds tend to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire, and interview), which is why the researcher resorted to a moderate choice of sample size. More so, the researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. As a result, the amount of time spent on research will be reduced.

1.8 Definition of terms

yahoo-yahoo: an Internet fraud, a kind of cyber crime that aims to steal money (or other valuable assets) from an entity.


This material content is developed to serve as a GUIDE for students to conduct academic research



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