The Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ola Olukoyede, shared a surprising incident where a 17-year-old successfully hacked into his personal computer and bank account while being interrogated at his office in Lagos.

Olukoyede revealed this during a discussion with editors at the EFCC Headquarters in Jabi, Abuja, last Tuesday.

He narrated inviting the 17-year-old to his Lagos office for questioning, where the teenager effortlessly bypassed the security measures of his locked computer.

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“I brought into my Lagos office a seventeen-year-old boy who is studying History and Anthropology. He is in the 200 level. He is not doing anything science-related. The guy sat in my office in Lagos and demonstrated some things to me on my laptop,” Olukoyede said.

“He asked for my number, I gave him my number and through my number, he got my BVN. He then mentioned the name of my account number to me at the bank. I didn’t tell him anything,” he added.

Olukoyede emphasized the importance of discouraging such actions among young individuals, as they could face serious consequences.

“The problem is, I see crime in that, and I also see opportunities in it. So, if you leave these guys, we don’t make them know that what they are doing is wrong, if you leave them, they will continue to see it as a way of life to make money,” he said.

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Regarding the punishment for cybercrimes committed by youths, Olukoyede mentioned the EFCC’s approach of administering light sentences while focusing on reorientation.

“We plead for light sentences so that we can reorientate them and that’s part of what we’re doing. What joy will I derive from sending a 17-year-old boy to jail? You have destroyed his future. You have destroyed his career,” he explained.

The 17-year-old confidently informed Olukoyede that he could transfer up to 10 million naira from any account in a single transaction. However, Olukoyede intervened to prevent him from demonstrating this in his office.

The teenager explained that he got involved in cybercrime because his parents, who are farmers, couldn’t work due to security concerns, and he had to take care of his siblings.

In response, Olukoyede promised to take responsibility for the boy’s schooling if he stopped the criminal act.

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“I told my family, we are going to do that. I spoke to one of my friends who is also ready to help take up the schooling of the SSS 2 guy. So I’m still looking for someone who will take up the one for the JSS 2 sibling,” he said.

This incident highlights the EFCC’s efforts to rehabilitate convicted internet fraudsters and reintegrate them into society with reduced sentences.