Lesotho Times

When cellphones are in wrong hands

EISH, cellular phones can be a nuisance, especially when used by the wrong minds.

These contraptions can turn good people bad…serious! People do not mind telling little (and sometimes big) lies just because the person they are having a conversation with cannot see them.  

And believe me it is not just us the youth, even our elders have the tendency to fib because of the convenience a cell phone gives.

Oh come now, we have all done it, one way or the other.

“I am nearly there…I am stuck in traffic,” yet you have only just started moving and you are still a long distance away.

Liar!

Or you hear “I am alone baby” and at that time you are literally wrapped around someone else, giving your rendition of the hit “love the one you with”!

But then, since the birth of the internet, cell phones have actually taken the back seat as “lie aids” (they help you lie right?).

The big ol’ World Wide Web has taken over, and taken lying to the next level, a very high level at that!

It has taken the cake, the crown, the throne as a ‘lie aid’!

During the time of letters, then telegrams, and later telephones and much later cell phones, there were not so many people that got duped as compared to now.

The internet has brought us a variety of scams that have seen families lose fortunes and poor souls lose their marbles over such losses.

The most popular is the 411 scam I guess, but even that one comes in different guises. I have received so many emails about some long lost dead trillionaire relative that I should have long bought me an island of my own.

The emails that break my heart are those that usually say I have won a Green Card (to a certain country I really want to go live in) in some trumped up sweepstakes.

Usually to get to any of your winnings,  you have to pay some rather odd amount of money, or give your bank account details; which you will duly find emptied.

The pathetic and callous scams are those that use our emotions and try to tug at our heartstrings by telling a tear-jerker of a story of how a two-year-old has about three terminal illnesses and how your donation can save the poor little thing’s life. There’s one thing I can say though, whoever comes up with those emails is super intelligent, I just wish they were using their brains for good, not prying on the innocent, naive and clueless.

When the creators of these elaborate scams realised they no more had marks to con, they had to become creative, and shift gears and take on a different semblance.

They realised that the one thing that makes people get really desperate and do brainless things (like give a total stranger your PIN) besides greed, is love.

We all know, even without the web, there are some folk who have pulled some pretty stupid stunts in the name of matters of the heart — Love!

So now scams have moved to online dating services.

For me the first one is the idea of paying for an account with an online dating company. They want you to pay for a couple of months to put up your picture and a few lines about yourself so that people can ogle at you and propose (sometimes) some pretty lewd stuff to you.

That is just so wrong on so many levels; first of all, why pay for love? It is a silly idea for someone to say I should pay them for my looks and brains so that he can match me up with the hunk of my dreams, I want the service free, it’s the internet for God’s sake!  

Second, how do I know that the company is legit? What if it is a front to take all my money after I give them my bank details, card numbers and even security questions?

You see, it is easy to lose your life’s savings in so many ways in this so called quest for love!

Then OK, there are free online dating services where you will meet a whole lot of folk, one stranger than the next. Here the danger of being conned is still quite high, actually it is very high because now you will meet up with this person who you believe is you soul mate, someone you have been searching for your whole life and find out that it is all a lie later.

They are harmless (if you can say heartbreak is harmless) scammers who just do it for fun; they tell you what you want to hear, send you pictures of very attractive people, claiming to be them, then when you finally have fallen deep, they either disappear or reveal it to and laugh themselves silly.

Those are just evil imps who have a twisted sense of humour. Then there are those who are in it for money, they court their prey (and they can run many at a time, look he is just sitting in front of a computer, it is not as exhausting as having multiple lovers in your town) for the long howl.

They gain the trust and more especially the love, in the end some way or the other someone is going to part with some cash in the name of internet love.

It is really pathetic of these monsters to use such a beautiful thing for such evil.

In other cases it has not just been money, lives have been lost! There have been instances of psychopaths using these portals of communication to lure folk into their webs of human trafficking syndicates, rape syndicates and even sicker as food (cannibals).

I will not deny that there are honest men and women out there really searching for love, and even some who can hold up their hands and bear witness that it is possible to find love on the net; but I really urge you my people to be super careful in this virtual world. Safe surfing!

 One day I will tell you of my online dating adventures, I promise!

Lesotho Times

Lesotho's widely read newspaper, published every Thursday and distributed throughout the country and in some parts of South Africa.

Contact us today: News: editor@lestimes.co.ls Advertising: marketing@lestimes.co.ls Telephone: +266 2231 5356

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