MTN NG told me a while ago that they will call my mobile number in the next 24 hours to tell me how I won one million naira and a free ticket to South Africa 2010 football fiesta. Folks, here is how it happened:

At exactly 04.09 this morning, I woke up when my phone buzzed, only to receive the following message from “MTN NG”

You are a winner of (NI,000,000.00 & a free ticket to the 2010 W/CUP). Visit (www.yellofifa.com) immediately for verification: code: 462070.

I chuckled and went back to sleep. Our 419ers never rest; always awake (even at 4.00am) looking for who to dupe. Before I dozed off again, my mind went to the story I heard of some IT guys who ply their trade by designing websites for these 419ers.

This fired my curiousity about yellofifa.com – I wanted to see how perfect a419 site could be. I got to the office, and this was the first thing I checked out. Bang on! Yellofifa was a near-perfect reproduction of the MTN website, with a prominent instruction in red that read:

If you have received a message from our sms Gateway as one of the FIFA GAME SHOW winners you are requested to verify your Code here.
Phone Number
Winning Code

Click here to verify

I chuckled again and decided to play their game. First, I entered a wrong phone number and a wrong code, and I got the following result:

“The mobile number and the winning code cannot be found in our database. Please ensure that your mobile number and code is correct.”

Okay; I put my phone number and the wrong code and I got the same result

“The mobile number and the winning code cannot be found in our database. Please ensure that your mobile number and code is correct.”

I did not give up: I put the wrong phone number (09034528765) and the correct code supplied, and what do you know, I hit the bulls eye:

Congratulations!! Your winning has been verified, you are requested to carefully follow the instructions below!!

And the instructions?

you are requested to follow the necessary steps to complete you verification, You are strictly requested not to disclose your winning code to anyone else, As some one else could claim your price. Follow the steps and carefully fill the boxes below.

Below is the information that I filled in the boxes supplied:

Full Name: Shokoloko Bangoshay
Date of Birth: 21/12/2009
Home Address: State House, Abuja
Phone Number: 09023417654 (a different number from the above, but still a non-existent number)
Occupation: Mendicant
Nationality: Non Nigerian
State: Las Vegas
City: Oklahoma
Religion : Communist(Options: Christian, Muslim, Communist, None)

“Verify Again” I did and found that they were satisfied with the information given above, as I was moved on to the next stage:

Instructions: Provide your banking details; you will be required to verify your account to ensure that it really belongs to you

Very good point, I noted, since I may be foolish enough to want to go and give another person the N1m that I won, or my free ticket to SA for that matter.

So I proceeded to give them my account details, as follows:

Account Name: Shokoloko Bangoshay
Account Number: 234560000000212
Select Bank: Xchange Card

Click to verify
I did, again, and for 30 seconds, all I saw was the message:

Processing … Do not interrupt…..

Finally, I got what looked like an impatient response

Your account has not been verified, you are requested to confirm that this account really belongs to you by filling the boxes and click proceed to continue verification. For assistance or difficulties click live support to chat with an MTN operator.

I looked up and saw the Live Support panel, only it had this legend:

“Need Assistance? Live Support is Unavailable.”

So that left me with filling the form again, and I proceeded as before, although this time, the boxes contained more options, as follows:

Account Name: Shokoloko Bangoshay
Account Number: 234560000000212
Phone Number: 09023487654 (changed the number a third time)
Bank Name: Xchange Card
ATM Card Number: 234560000000212
ATM Exp Date: 08/10/2004
PIN Number – Click numbers to enter pin. 4321

The ATM expiry date had two options (MM/YY) but I found that I could supply DD as well, so I wrote that my card would expire in 08/10/2004. I attempted to continue the prank with PIN number but when I got to 43215 the site warned that “the pin is supposed to be four numbers!” and so I desisted and stopped at 4321

Click to verify:

I did, and this time around, I received a cryptic and very impatient message:

Your details are incorrect. Crosscheck and re-enter details.

And I did that – exactly as before.. and what do you know? I finally hit the jackpot of an answer?

“Thank you! Your winning has been verified. We shall call your mobile number in the next 24 hours.”

Do I hear congratulations for my winning entry? I love Nigeria — an amazing country where one can win N1m and a free ticket to the World Cup without playing any lottery or entering any competition!

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30 thoughts on “I won N1m and a free ticket to South Africa 2010!”
  1. I was sent a message that i was a lucky winner of 1,000,000 and free ticket to MTNFIFA2010 on 23rd september 2009. my phone 08039189252

  2. I Mr. Jimoh was sent a message about winning 1Million Naira and free ticket to MTNFIFA2010 on 23rd of September 2009 at 2:45am. My number is 08039186335. I want to verify if is true.

  3. To day 25th septewber i receive a message that i have won 1 million naira and a free ticket to fifa 2010 hosting in south africa.my gsm number is 08034721618.i can't really open the website i was given which is http://www.mtnfifa2010.com

  4. I recieved a message from MTN NG saying i've luckly won 1,000,0009one million naira,the message was sent to 08038814843,and the funniest of it all is that up till today i wrote this report i've not heared from you MTN NG.please i would like to know if that message was meant to be A JOKE or A MISTAKE.thanks from JP-CASH 08134599498

  5. i was sent a message in which i was told that i won one million and a free ticket to south Africa and i claimed the price but i was told that i should leave a query which i did i have received any information since. my name is DARE MICHAEL SEGUN. My phone number is 08038162310 and my verification number is 462070

  6. I discover this write up becos exactly the same sms was sent to my wife. I knew from the first impulse that it was fraudulent.
    I pray that God will deliver these fraudsters.

  7. deji,nawaoo this people are real motherfuckers.fuck them 20 times my dad receive the same message too but i did not believe,anyway i still think MTN is at fault.

  8. Oga nawaooo. i thank you for letting me to know this Idiots guys of 419ners.

    This morning they tried my inteligent by sending this great mind pussles text that i have won. so sure for my side was that i paticepated for the game.

    Thanks you so much of this exposure.

    Nwokeigbo Lagos.

  9. Dear Readers,
    fire from above shall scandal wicked soul that always make people to cry.God will make his people to escape from the hand of 419 [agents of devil].Children of God be wise don't allow darkness to enter ur life with sorrow, look for JESUS today, enjoy him for life, repent and born again.God will touch his people with divine mercy and those that ready to serve him. from prophet s ejire 08033955764

  10. but why? Why would someone sit down and think of this kind of game. Anyway I got the text and I was not moved by it. i have been using MTN since it started business in Nigeria and I know they have a way they communicate with their numerous customers. Whoever is in this game should repent now or else the anger of God on them will bring pain, tears to their lives. This same set of people are the same who are currently involved in the Glo sms too and even the one of Emails. Why and Haba!

  11. I TOO RECEIVED SIMILAR SMS AT ABOUT 3AM THIS MORNING AND OUT OF CURIOSITY DECIDED TO VERIFY ONLY FOR THE QUOTED WEBSITE "WWW.MTNFIFA2010.COM" PROVING DIFFICULT TO ASSESS. IN MY SEARCH FOR THE SITE, I CAME ACROSS YOUR STORY WHICH IS AN EYE OPENER AND WILL SERVE AS A SAVING GRACE TO OTHER POTENTIAL VICTIMS. THANKS FOR SHARING YOUR EXPERIENCE WITH NIGERIANS.

  12. THESE GUYS ARE NOW SOMETHING ELSE.NIGERIANS SHOULD BE VERY CAREFUL BECAUSE I DON'T THINK A GENUINE WINNER OF AN MTN,GLO ETC PROMO SHOULD BE ASK OF HIS/HER BANK DETAILS FOR ANY KIND OF VERIFICATION.

  13. Mmmmm, Interesting! I received this same sms with the code this morning. Na wao! With this ingenuity why can't these fraudsters do something praise worthy? God help us.
    Thanks for the blog man! You're right on point.I will spread the news.

  14. Waooo!!!! I rcv the same txt and code no. I played along and entered an account no without correct ATM Pin No. But cant MTN do anything about these fraudstars?
    Thanks for your blog
    God bless

  15. I pity these criminals.I know that they will be caught very soon.Lazy poeple.Pls, let's keep on telling people that such sms are fake.A Priest writes.God bless u.

  16. this guys are serious motherfuckers..i recieved the same message yesterday..tanx for the information…u confirmed my suspicion

  17. nawaoooo for me i got similar sms that i've won millions of pounds do u know what i did? hmmm i emptied my account open i fresh one then sent them the empty account details for them to pay the money for were dem no pay any pepper. dem do mistake sha cos waffi man no dey carry last before you guy me i go first guy you na so i bi i sharp pass naything. i b original waffi man

  18. Here are other comments from Facebook, and my email:

    (1) Big time congratulation!!! l would surely like to share in the millions. So when are we celebrating?
    -Idara Ukpanyang

    (2)From Oseloka Zikora to Muyiwa Akintunde: Muyiwa, if what you're saying is correct, then the text I received from a certain MTN N indicating that I won a ticket to MTN FIFA 2010 Big Bang match at Teslim Balogun Stadium on July 24th is a fruad! The only reason I didn't take up the offer was that I felt it was ridiculous to invite someone resident in Abuja to Lagos without providing a return… Read More air ticket and hotel accmd. However, if you investigate and there was such promo wins by MTN N, then there's a need to standardize the method of informing winners of MTN promos – a consistent method either by a certain kind of SMS number or through calls by an identifiable MTN N coded number! Meanwhile, Ogbuagu again used his journalistic instict to boot, spoiling biz for yahoo boys! So sorry guys!

    (3) Muyiwa's Response: You're right about the MTN FIFA 2010 Big Bang invitation, Oseloka. That was an exception because the text message served as entry ticket to the game. Regarding your being based in Abuja and requested to watch a match in Lagos, subcribers' data capture by all networks is ongoing at the end of which it would be possible to target subscribers in specific locations.

    (4)From Paul C Nwabuikwu: Hilarious! These guys are increasingly better educated and innovative. Washing money with magic powders is old hat. Now they are ready to take the gullible and the greedy on a techno journey designed to end in tears. For a highly engaging account of their exploits, check out Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani's impressive first novel, I DO NOT COME TO YOU BY CHANCE… lest I forget Ogbuagu you should try some fiction yourself. Masterful rendition. You still have the touch…

    (5) From CeeJay Uba Agu: Na real waoo.. I reserve my comment.

  19. Hmmm.. this people are mad because i saw same too on my phone, any way i replied it but as I was filling the form, something told me to stop because they asked for my ATM CARD NUMBER, ATM PIN and my BANK DETAILS. Nigerian if you see any text message of such please ignore it.

  20. Incredible…perculiarly Nigerian. Congratulations still…you won more than N1m beating them at their expensive but foolish games.

    – Grace Eyoma

  21. How can a senior Ichie work so hard for a mere one million naira? You ought to have been told you won a million dollars!

    A good read all the same. My BP must have come down considerably in the last few minutes.

    C. DON

  22. Na so their life be. Hopeless people. I have 'won' so many MTN competitions (that I didn't know about) and so many lotteries in the UK (via may yahoo email) that I have lost count.
    Only fools and terribly greedy people fall for such nonsense. The day I fall for the pranks of 419 people, I would rather they are praised than condemned!
    Dem no go see me for market.
    Cheers.
    Fred Ohwahwa

  23. Dear Mr. Anikwe,
    Thanks for the details. I actually received a similar text message, but never responded simply because I know where it was coming from and was not in anyway hoping to win N1m naira and a lottery ticket to SA when I never played any game at all. The come in many shades and sizes. God bless Nigeria – Good people, Great Nation. — Temple

  24. Oga Ogbuagu, I hail you. You got these guys at their game.

    I took special interest in this posting because I am an MTN PR consultant. For the purpose of your readers, I want to confirm that winners of MTN promotions are contacted not via text messages but by phone calls. And such calls originate from MTN staff numbers ONLY. If anyone receives a text message announcing a "winning" s/he is advised to disregard it. Time after time, we have had to educate subscribers on the fradulent ways of our compatriots. Interswitch and partner banks have also aggressively campaigned that under no circumstance should debit/credit card details be revealed to anyone. We'll keep working on customer education.

    Muyiwa Akintunde

  25. A friend who read this sent the following by sms:

    "We shall call your mobile number in the next 24 hours" – within which time, they would have emptied Mr. Bangoshay's account, with the help of a fraudulent bank official who will just forget to send the poor man alerts until after his money was all gone. God help us!

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