Johannesburg - Figures released on Thursday by the Southern
African Fraud Prevention Service (SAFPS), show its members recorded identity crime and application fraud amounting to R720.17m in 2009 - lower than the R1.3bn reported in 2008.
Pat Cunningham, executive director of SAFPS is of the opinion that the lower figure is as a result of both the economic crisis during 2009, with the major financial institutions tightening up on credit granting with the National Credit Act also playing a part.
However, the SAFPS does indicate that more than 11 700 people were filed on their systems during 2009 for attempted fraud, which shows an increase of 782 filings over the 2008 figure. This brings the total number of people filed with SAFPS for fraudulent application and identity crime to more than 67 000.
The SAFPS data also shows that the use of false documentation through the presentation of false pay slips, false bank statements and drivers licences was the highest number of filings amounting to 7 880 reports.
The number of people who applied for the SAFPS protection service because they had been impersonated amounted to 1 382.
A new service was introduced in late 2009 for the reporting of employee fraud amongst SAFPS members. This service is still in its infancy and it will be some time before critical mass shows meaningful data, SAFPS said.
- I-Net Bridge