Bombing, Billing, and Cash-Out: the dynamics of the illicit flow of money through international cyber fraud by Nigerian “Yahoo Boys


  • Savictor Sobechi Evans-Ibe Independent Essayist and Technical Writer



Cyber fraud, Illicit Financial Flows, Nigeria, Yahoo Boys


Cyber fraudsters, popularly called Yahoo Boys in Nigeria, employ different strategies and formats across various levels of sophistication to get in touch with potential victims and gain the trust of these unsuspecting victims (Bombing). Then the Yahoo Boys go ahead to devise means of requesting payments from their victims (billing) and secure a successful receipt of such fraudulent payments (cash out). This situation has affected the country, its citizens, as well as the victims adversely; hence, the need for innovative ideas to curtail the ugly trend. This essay sets out to proffer viable solutions to the illicit movement of money through international cyberfraud by Yahoo Boys in Nigeria. The essay starts by classifying international cyberfraud as a component of illicit financial flows. It continues to describe the nature, enduring patterns, and formats adopted by Yahoo Boys, and attempts a quantification of the magnitude of relevant outflows. The essay identifies poverty, corruption, harsh economic realities, indiscipline, unemployment, nature of security architecture on social media platforms, amongst others as enabling conditions for fraud. The essay finally recommends personal discipline, skill acquisition, and personal development, greater national commitments to the fight against corruption and poverty, rebranding corporate taxations to fix the education and skills gap, improved security on social media, sustained enlightenment of vulnerable populations, detention in special facilities for convicted fraudsters, and greater international commitments to the fight against cyberfraud in Nigeria. Several authoritative government publications, academic papers, journal articles, and online publications were consulted for this paper.

Author Biography

Savictor Sobechi Evans-Ibe, Independent Essayist and Technical Writer

Savictor Sobechi Evans-Ibe is an independent Essayist and Technical Writer. The first draft of this paper won the 2022 Amartya Sen Global Essay Prize, and was presented at Yale University’s 2022 Annual Global Justice Program Conference. The author is deeply grateful to Prof. Thomas Pogge for his contributions to the success of this paper. He also appreciates Global Financial Integrity (GFI) for its generous funding which aided the completion of this paper. Savictor Sobechi Evans-Ibe declares no potential conflict of interest.




How to Cite

Evans-Ibe, S. S. (2023). Bombing, Billing, and Cash-Out: the dynamics of the illicit flow of money through international cyber fraud by Nigerian “Yahoo Boys. Journal of Academics Stand Against Poverty, 3(1), 37–56.