Monday, October 5, 2015

Abuja bombings: Search for ‘Twitter forecaster’ ChimaOkoro63* continues

Twitter user

he search for the “true” identity of one Chima Okoro, who predicted the attack on Abuja, the nation’s capital city, has begun online.
Tweeting via @chimaokoro63, Okoro, whose identity has yet to be unveiled, had predicted the bombings on Tweeter. The unknown tweeter added that Lagos would be bombed.
Twenty persons reportedly lost their lives while 41 others sustained serious injuries in the twin attacks that hit Nyanya and Kuje, on the outskirts of the nation’s capital, on Friday.
The account was taken down when.......
Internet users raised the alarm over the prediction. Yet, controversy over his tweet has continued.
As of Sunday afternoon, a twist emerged in the controversy. A tweeter, posting on @AbdulMahmud1, claimed that he had unveiled the said Okoro on the Facebook. The Oracle, the profile name on the Twitter page, posted an MTN number, which he claimed was on Okoro’s Facebook page.
According to Abdul Mahmud, Truecaller reveals that the telephone number belongs to one Sadiq Hono.
Our correspondent got the same result when the telephone number was run on Truecaller. However, the true source of the phone number could not be confirmed.
Abdul Mahmud tweeted on Sunday, “@Chimaokoro63 appears to have left a clue to his “real” identity. His Facebook account has a mobile telephone number that is revealing. A few minutes after I ran the check, Truecaller sent me an email, with the content, ‘Hi, someone used Truecaller to search your name and phone number.’
“Could it have been coincidental that someone I ran check on also ran a check on me? It is getting mysterious and sinister. Our security and intelligence agencies have their works cut out. When terrorists make mistakes, they get burst.”
On Twitter, Abdul Mahmud describes himself as a lawyer and the President of the Public Interest Lawyers League. He is also a poet and columnist if his Twitter profile is anything to believe.
On Facebook, one Tony Osborg, also said he was following Okoro’s Internet traces. He, however, said the telephone number was added to the Facebook page said to belong to Okoro after the bombing.
“Can someone else run this number on TrueCaller app and see what will appear? I hope our intelligence agencies are working on this. Chima Okoro might be a pseudo name. This guy is a major lead for the Abuja bombing,” Osborg posted.
Internet users are calling on security experts to use clues left on the Internet to trace the identity of the suspected bombing forecaster.
Okoro, in the morning of October 1, had tweeted, “I pray for Nigeria: There will be a bomb blast in Abuja and Lagos, Boko Haram is going to attack and kill police, army& Navy their evils (sic).”
The Twitter account had on its profile a photograph of a dark-complexion young man relaxing in a room while holding up a mobile phone.
Tweeters had started raising the alarm on the tweets shortly after the Friday blast. The account was taken down, leading to another round of controversy.
Across different social media platforms, the development has continued to raise questions, with many individuals advising Internet users against reckless comments.
On DisQus, Omoyo Oba, said, “The man may be innocent but this should serve as a lesson to those who just say what they like on social media. He may have just brought problems to himself because he could not keep his fingers away from the keyboard.”
While many Nigerian Internet users still get away with their criminal activities, tech experts have noted that Internet Protocol could be of immense help in tracing cybercriminals. IP is to a computer what a street number is to a house.

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