The Sakawa Boys: Internet Scamming in Ghana

The Sakawa Boys: Internet Scamming in Ghana

2011, Technology  -   54 Comments
6.76
12345678910
Ratings: 6.76/10 from 93 users.

Fraudsters in Ghana show us how they use internet scams to steal thousands of dollars from unsuspecting victims all over the globe.

While Nigeria's scammers may have written the book on West African internet fraud, their shtick looks like CompuServe compared to what's going on in Ghana.

Unsatisfied with the meager winnings from emailing thousands of random Westerners in hopes of convincing one poor sap they're the treasurer of the Ivory Coast, Ghana's scammers decided to stack the odds in their favor the old-fashioned way - witchcraft.

Taking a page from cyberpunk, traditional West African Juju priests adapted their services to the needs of the information age and started leading down-on-their-luck internet scammers through strange and costly rituals designed to increase their powers of persuasion and make their emails irresistible to greedy Americans.

More great documentaries

guest

54 Comments
Newest
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
John Codrington
John Codrington
1 year ago

I met a Girl name Ofuso Sackey is she real

Ofuso Sackey
Ofuso Sackey
1 year ago

I was by a girl in Accra Ghana is she real

Robert SPENCER
Robert SPENCER
4 years ago

Ha ha Yahoo boys in Guyana are a group a gang of guys that teach each other the scams and they get a girlfriend the ones that they can and they have babies with them then they use the woman on the Internet to bring in the money to pay for their family it is a romance scam they know if they put their real girlfriend live video on the Internet you will believe anything she says when you call your girlfriend in Guyana they have the couch out in the middle of the room and the boyfriend hides behind the couch when you’re on video did it to me for two years and I finally caught her and it was her baby doing the crying not the neighbor she finally admitted it they are very sneaky and they never intend to ever leave Ghana and come to USA They will even get a passport to make you think they’re coming because they’re cheap but you never get them to go to the embassy and show proof on video they will send fake papers

Robert SPENCER
Robert SPENCER
4 years ago

Some other women are real they come on video as them self but they have boyfriends and they do not intend to come to USA they just make you think they do are well and hide their boyfriends and babies

Robert Thomas
Robert Thomas
5 years ago

I was text message from a Natalie Brentford age 31 in Ghana is she real or what

MM
MM
5 years ago

I was contacted by a guy, his "name" was Aaron Denzel. He contacted me on facebook, but I knew from the beginning that is something wrong with him because he asked me to give him my e mail address to chat on Hangouts. He explained me that he works on a oil rig and he feels alone and he needs someone to talk too. Honestly I felt sorry for him so I continued with the whole fairy tale, but after 2 weeks he was saying that he will come into my country and we can live together as a happy family. I didnt believe him from the beginning but all I can say for people who interact on the internet, never to give real information, and of course never to send money.. They have a lot of imagination, I really feel sorry for them, but cheating people there is never an excuse to do it. I ve wanted to add also some photos which he sent me, but I can see that here is not allowded

Chris Mayhew
Chris Mayhew
5 years ago

Scamming people is just what these dudes do

Nathan Gordon
Nathan Gordon
5 years ago

Why do the Ghonnareans continue to reproduce?

michael
michael
5 years ago

Scam them back! Play along. That’s what I did. They are criminals! What are they going to do? Call the police? They are not as sophisticated and smart as the media makes them out to be. They are idiots. I told “her” that I was walking down a sidewalk and a Tyrannosaurus Rex came out of the woods and bit me and then ran back into the woods and “she” believed me!!! I strung “her” along. I promised her that I would send “her” money on a specific date and got “her” hopes up high and then when it came time I
revealed that I had scammed “her” and gave “her” nothing. DO NOT give them any personal info, your true location, photos or money. “She” goes by the name of Esther Williams.

Abdul-Latief
Abdul-Latief
6 years ago

Africa our corrupt leaders are responsible. You for que to vote for them to enrich themselves and their family forgetting about those who voted them into power. Just imagine I completed university way back 2015 without job. I was told to pay Gh3500 before I could get a job from Ghana education service. You could imagine. Such of these you will be tempted to do sakawa so part of it is our nonsense leaders.

FRANK MARK
FRANK MARK
6 years ago

Just about every video I've watched on here, our friend wald0 appears. You're fuked in the head mate, reach out, ask for help. God bless

FRANK MARK
FRANK MARK
6 years ago

Plases tell me what to do and get money

Dcgun
Dcgun
6 years ago

I was conned by a checker one night at a Walmart. I bought a few items and went to check out and at the register I was purchasing a phone card for a young lady who had done some work around the house for me. I paid for it all with a credit card and the total was a little over $125 or thereabouts. After paying for it the checker acted like it wouldn't accept the upgrade, because their all just a piece of magnetic tape that gets the activation in the process as I am sure everyone is well aware of. Anyway he convieniently has none of the cards at his checkout and I have to go in search of a checkout that had one and return to his register where he has supposidly credited my account back and he runs my card again for the purchase of the new one. Before I left the store I knew something wasn't kosher with everything but I had paid with a card and every register at stores like Walmart have no less than 5 cameras on every one there at all times, sure enoough he hadn't removed the first card from my bill. The nest day I went back and had to see the manager to get it resolved! Has anyone noticed how Walmart makes you feel like your guilty untill proven inocent in any kind of return. And I am a businessman and usually always in a suit when I go to buy things mayby they think I look look like a lawyer!LOL

Dcgun
Dcgun
6 years ago

I can't believe people fall for it anymore It first came to my attention about 10 years ago. Someone posing as a younger female student studying medicine in Guyana. They were suppose to be from the US and their father was from Africa and was in an accident and dies there and they are now a victim of circumstances and need your money to come home and be your girl. Surprisingly women around the worl don't see their pictures being posted by someone else in these scams, and possibly it has happened. I imagine these people, male or female, Don't care wether their playing the role of either as long as they can snare themselves a patsy. They are getting much more proficient at it because years ago I could spot them a mile away mostly because of the dialect. It would be me want to marry you instead of I etc. If they are so good at this now they just need to act like their happy and rich and get on with their miserable lives! Hell isn't full yet and thats where these people are doomed for! I was approached by 4 today their getting bad on Zoosk. They start a subscription and write their number on their post, getting kicked off soon after they start but long enough to get a few lines cast. I have had to of been approached probably close to fifty times.

Nathan
Nathan
6 years ago

scams happen everywhere. I was in a grocery shop and this young white boy walks in. he picked an item of about $10 and went to pay up. I overheard him ask the man at the machine to charge him $100. After that, I noticed the man counted some notes and gave to the boy. I later got to understand that the man gave him $90. isn't that a scam?

There are so many things to watch out for when it comes to these anonymous emails. Firstly, they have so many punctuation errors.

Richard Aluko
Richard Aluko
7 years ago

The internet scam! It all started in Nigeria. In Nigeria they call it yahoo yahoo boy/yahoo plus or G boy. Nigerians have many ways to scam you than any other scammer in the whole world.

Blossom
Blossom
7 years ago

I enjoyed this one to the extent that it put a face on it. They seem like nice, but misguided people. If you're educated but think it's okay to to take money from people just because they fall for it, you need to check yourself. If you think paying a man who throws eggs at you is some spiritual advantage, I'm sorry. For those who have fallen for these scams - seriously?! They make zero sense. Complete strangers do not legitimately email you and ask for money. Seriously.

Where'sWald0
Where'sWald0
7 years ago

Just about every video I've watched on here, our friend wald0 appears. You're fuked in the head mate, reach out, ask for help. God bless

LC
LC
8 years ago

If you want to know more about perhaps why these scams exist, rather than simply condemning them, you have to understand the situation of the economy in Ghana (and West Africa, also).

Scams exist in countries all around the world, it's interesting to me that people are so upset when Africans try to scam Americans (or other Westerners.). I sense this outrage has tinges of prejudice, when people should just try to understand what is going on in that country. But, perhaps that is asking to much.

If you want to read an interesting book about characters and perhaps build emphathy (although I doubt many would) the book "I Do Not Come to You by Chance" by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani is an excellent choice. It's well-written and about the 419 scams in Nigeria.

Eric
Eric
8 years ago

The question is why do these youngsters engage in internet scams and fraud?.. well don't be too quick to judge these people, This act has been almost impossible to deal because of the hardship in thier countries especially ghana, People will work really hard and do whatever they can to go through schooling and at the end there are no jobs for them. some of these guys are the breadwinners of thier families. There is soo much hardship that these guys will do anything at all to make money, People don't see the need for education now because even after u spend getting that education you end up jobless, There is only one way to stop this bull****, Visionary leaders and an effectIve economy, arresting these guys won't stop this act

bob andy
bob andy
9 years ago

Met him on lover inn and he introduced himself as Sgt. goodwill from USA in mission at Iraq, wife died and had son with a friend in Ghana. We chatted for month including his son Perry on cam. It happened that he found a briefcase of gold and wanted to ship to me but had no way then he brought the idea that his friend in Ghana knows Ghana Customs and can pass gold there to me, it started with few $ until I paid almost $46,000 during the process until I found on the web that it scam and I contacted the Ghana Crime Unit and he was arrested and some of my losses recoverd.Beware of scam from Ghana and contact officials!

Exposing Milabs
Exposing Milabs
9 years ago

I want so much to help a boy that connected with me 6 months ago from Ghana, at first needing help getting a laptop for school, then help because his grandfather was sick and couldn't work, but then he said it was his Grandmother (caretakers), and the red flag went up. I never sent money. Now, he needs only $300 to pay for 3 semesters of school that includes the books. His "teacher" called me today to encourage my support. I keep playing along to see where it goes I guess. I'm now waiting for the SCHOOL to confirm he's enrolled and show me some documentation etc...I want to be wrong...I want to help this kid if he's genuine....but the red flags are now on high alert. I think I'll be keeping the cash.

Dee Dee
Dee Dee
10 years ago

He calls Sefa cosmopolitan? LMAO........

Dee Dee
Dee Dee
10 years ago

The juju priest is the savviest scammer of them all lol.....little ( and useless)work for plenty money.

texastea2
texastea2
10 years ago

Reprovo sadly that has happened to me almost many times. I have so far never fallen for the scam (most are dumber than a bag of rocks and easy to catch in a lie) you call them out and usually they stay in costume for a short argument then the real anger comes out. I have enjoyed many mornings waking up and calling the scammers just to screw with them and hopefully ruin their day. I know it is mean but these people are misguided at best. The problem is the ones they are (rightfully) angry at are all DEAD.
The christian thing is used a lot. They figure ,it worked for the Christians that destroyed their countries , should work for them

Reprovo a
Reprovo a
11 years ago

The VICE reporter throws himself to the sharks willingly and Ignorantly.

Reprovo a
Reprovo a
11 years ago

I almost sent someone from Ghana I met on a chatroom around 200 euros so they could finish school and help their dying mother.The person was very friendly and desperate but I had an Inkling It was a scam.I started to make up reasons why I couldn't help him financially and like a switch he turned from friendly to demanding to hostile.Then I knew It was definitely a scam.It was a christian chatroom and he weaved his way In looking for a victim that was gullible and compassionate enough to help him out.

IndustryOfBlame
IndustryOfBlame
11 years ago

Totally loled at 13;14

No space robot movies in Ghana what the hell?!

I think these Sakawa people are much like stock brokers and bank executives. They contribute nothing to society, yet expect a great deal of payment for what they do. Despite this, they are still widely considered to be honest businessmen.

Holst
Holst
11 years ago

LoL Wald0, you are one of those people that no matter what the subject matter is it's happened to you or you went through the same situation etc. Always slightly embellished to be more dramatic.It always brings a smile to my face. I always look forward to reading your comments :D

byronikus
byronikus
11 years ago

"why does he throw eggs?", "he likes eggs." "oh.." XD

Highlander
Highlander
11 years ago

Good for you Waldo ! Screw the thieving bastards and if jail is sh*te in Ghana, too bad. Perhaps some will learn a hard lesson. Why am I so "anti" these guys? cos I am normally a trusting person and I had my computer wrecked by these b*stards a couple of years ago. Their thieving , parasitic methods of making money from those of us who do not steal from our brothers needs to be stamped on. This world has enough mistrust and these characters just add to the growing mistrust of each man to his neighbour.

dmxi
dmxi
11 years ago

escaping poverty justifies measures & so long one does it without a weapon or any other physical/psychological harm has my blessings.
- "shoplifters of the world unite !" -
- a smith -

Trevis Robotie
Trevis Robotie
11 years ago

Greed makes you weak...they feed on your greed!don't even look at the offer....learnt my lesson the hard way in Naples....Mercato Piazza Garibaldi,Nikon camera turned out a red brick !

TheDanishViking
TheDanishViking
11 years ago

Good watch.

wald0
wald0
11 years ago

I had one of these guys from Ghana try to convince me that someone had died there with the same last name I had and since no one was collecting the inheritance this rich person was leaving behind I could. His mistake was contacting me at work, I worked as a data analyst for Motorola at the time. Long story short the guy kept calling me at work, making management really angry. Finally the FBI was called and got involved and i guess the guy forgot to go see his JU-JU captain cause he got locked up. They took over my email account and converse with the guy pretending to be me and eventually convinced this clown to meet them. He probably thought he would just roll the stupid American when I showed up and get what ever i had on me, I don't know. In my opinion he got what he deserved. I have all the compassion in the world for being poor, not having the necessities of life, I've been through it myself. But I never once, not even when i was eating out of garbage cans, tried to take what some else had worked for by force or trickery. Maybe if i had been close to death that would have changed, but these guys don't look as if they are starving to me. They have simply found a way to justify theft and dishonesty and now that is how the prefer to make their living, much easier than figuring out a legitimate way to feed yourself.