Scam Alert: EFCC on the trail of suspected ATM fraudster Akinade Tofunmi (photos)

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Monday released a
statement addressing the rise of identity theft in Nigeria. Photos of a
suspected female fraudster on the run was also shared. Read below.

The much talked about ATM fraudsters are not resting on the oars. They
are all over the place laying siege to any susceptible victim. These
criminals go about fleecing unwary members of the public with their
ingenious, ever-changing modes of operations. The latest being the
infamous identity theft.

 Before now, cloning and PIN harvesting through electronic chips
cleverly concealed in the Automated Teller Machine (ATM), was the
universal mode. Over time, the tricks and decoys to entrap their victims
keep changing and have assumed a disturbing dimension.

The Ibadan Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission
(EFCC) is on the trail of a suspected ATM fraudster, who goes by the
name Akinade Tofunmi. Her trade in stock is identity theft. Her duty
post is any ATM Point and Point of Sales (POS) machines across the
However, she does not ‘work’ during the official hours of the week
rather; she operates late in the night when all bank transactions had
closed and preferably over the weekend when her ‘prospective’ victims
might not be able to alert the banks for any unauthorised transaction.
In her last operation, within twenty four hours; this fraudster who
operates with the identity of her victims succeeded to have raked in
about three million (N3m) within 24 hours.

Dateline was Friday, June 3rd, 2016, at about the close of work. A woman
simply identified as Alhaja and her husband who was waiting in the car
wanted to use an ATM somewhere in Ibadan, Oyo State, when Tofunmi
noticed that the woman limps. Pretending to be polite and cultured, she
offered to assist her with the transaction on the ATM. Unaware of the
intention behind the pious approach, she gave the fraudster her ATM card
and divulged her PIN. Smartly, the fraudster quickly checked the
balance in the account which had one million, seven hundred and forty
nine thousand, twenty six naira and seven kobo (N1, 749, 026. 07). After
the intended withdrawal of N20, 000:00, the fraudster swapped the card
and gave Alhaja a fake ATM card. Oblivious of the swap, she left with
her husband.

Shortly before midnight, the fraudster started the ‘harvest’ of her
booty. She withdrew one hundred and thirty thousand naira. Having
exceeded the daily withdrawing limit for that day, she waited for a few
minutes to the following day which was a Saturday. Shortly after
midnight, she made another rounds of withdrawals to the tune of one
hundred and fifty thousand naira which was also the daily limit for that
day. However, Alhaja and her husband had no one to run or call that
night to save the situation when the debit alerts start coming in

In a desperate need of where and how to empty the balance in the
account, she went to a night club where she met a motorcycle
transporter, popularly known as Okada whom she approached for a help.
Her decoy was that she had enough money in her account but could not
access it having exceeded her daily withdrawal limit. She showed the
bike man her balance and pleaded with him to give her his ATM card,
account details and PIN for a quick teller transfer from her (Alhaja’s)
account to the bike man’s account. With that, she has been able to
secure some of Alhaja’s money in the bike man’s account thereby stealing
the identity of the unsuspecting bike man.

At the early hours of that Saturday morning, she asked the bike man to
take her to a hotel with an intention to further steal the identity of
the hotelier for another movement of the money. At the hotel reception
while paying for her accommodation which was N10, 000 (Ten thousand
naira) for one night, she deliberated credited the hotel’s account with
one hundred and one thousand naira (N101, 000) feigning a mistake and
demanded a refund of ninety-one thousand naira (N91, 000) balance of an
overpayment. This was also done with Alhaja’s ATM card through the POS
machine at the Hotel.
To further conceal her identity, she provided fake personal details in
the hotel and gave the hotel the bike man’s account detail when the
hotel management requested for an account to deposit the refund.

All these happened on Saturday; hence, Alhaja and her husband are still
in dilemma with no help in sight to stop the transactions in the
account. By Sunday, Alhaja’s money had moved to the fraudster both in
cash and through transfer to the bike man account domicile in the same
All these while, the fraudster was in possession of both Alhaja the
first victim and the bike man, the second victim’s ATM cards. Later the
following day, Monday, the bike man could no longer reach the fraudster
on phone; he (the bike man) then went to the bank to request for another
ATM card. It was later discovered in the bank that part of Alhaja’s
money was transferred to the bike man’s account. He was arrested by the
bank and He’s now helping the EFCC operatives to track down the
fraudster. Investigations have revealed that this same fraudster had
stolen the identities of other victims earlier and had absconded to,
Ilorin, Kwara State.

Instances of Tofunmi’s nefarious activities have also been spotted in
other parts of the country particularly Port Harcourt City. The
Commission is hereby seeking the cooperation and support of public
spirited members of the society to please help unveil the identity of
this fraudster. Her face, though with different disguises, is on display
for anyone who knows her to please contact any of our offices across
the six geopolitical zones and Abuja. She must be apprehended, who knows
the next victim?

Besides, it is imperative to reiterate the need to be careful with our
ATM cards and PERSONAL IDENTIFICATION NUMBER (PIN). On no account should
we divulge any information about our account details to anyone. The
criminals, ATM fraudsters are on the loose, taking advantage of people’s
insensitivity and carelessness. Pictures show Akinade Tofunmi as
captured by CCTV Of the bank and Hotel she operated from.

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