The expectation was that brilliant American geeks would be hacking and cracking the rest of the world. After all, Americans were the most educated! The most technologically advanced! America had invented it all!
When you live in the 3rd World, (and this is going back to the late 1980s) you are on your own. If you can’t fix it and Roger can’t fix it, it is broken for true.
Jamaica did not get onto the information Highway until late. 1995. The First World had it in 1990. All our telecommunications had been owned by the Government which sold it to Careless & Worthless, sorry, Cable and Wireless of England.
One man in Jamaica was appointed to rule ‘Telecommunications of Jamaica” (a front for Cable and Wireless) and he decided who and what and when.
He was a millionaire, became a billionaire, by preventing Jamaica from getting on the World Wide Web.
However, Jamaicans are rather crafty, and we learned certain things on our own. We learned because we had no choice. And those that learned showed others, and soon enough, a fantastic small group of hackers emerged.
Jamaica is not alone, Nigeria and other countries had to do this, or else turn into North Korea.
As we knew more than the Must Consult Someone Else, that is the Microsoft trained Information Technology Consultants, (who knew a bit more than the ‘help’ key) we ran rings around them, and the only reason why we didn’t go absolutely Dark Web was because the senior Geeks were all responsible and respectable people.
They were lawyers, businessmen, bankers, with a sprinkling of school boys and Engineers. Although they could do stuff that was so illegal and clandestine it would blush the cheeks of Edward Snowden, they would do it, then fix it back so that the MSCE wouldn’t even know that last night the bank was hacked, one cent removed from every account, put into Mickey Mouse’s account, then one cent was returned to every account, and Mickey Mouse deleted.
This is how good we were.
As time passed more people came onto the Highway, and many of them were not respectable, nor responsible, but flat foot hustlers.
Nigeria had begun with the letter which explained how the Ministry of Finance had been hacked and the millions of dollars needed to be transferred to an account and you were selected.
It then moved online with this nonsense. Of course, you have to be scum to want to help steal money from another country, so if you were part you deserved what you got.
Along with this scam came ‘Scott Grant’.
This was one of my favourite scams as I saw it happening and was cracking up from the start until it reached Oprah.
For those who don’t know; Dating Sites are rubbish. There is no real matching. A woman who specifies will be matched to a man (or another woman) and if she is 34 she will be batched with those from 25 to 45. Other than that? Nope.
Nigerians, using the photo of a male model, the name ‘Scott Grant’, and claiming to be a Peace Corp worker, (to explain the Nigerian I.P.) would ask women in America to marry them, (after a few months of emails).
The woman would send him the fare and he’d never show up.
The Jamaican Lottery scam grew out of data entry sites, where clerks got the name, address, phone number and other bits from their jobs, sell them to Scammers who would hire females to call the numbers and claim; ‘You Won!’
Although there has been a great deal of publicity, beginning from hard copy going to yesterday, there are still people who want to believe that they actually won something.
Trust me, you didn’t win.