Consumers urged to be on scam alert

Consumers urged to be on scam alert

2014-10-21 14:20

Johannesburg - Bank customers should be aware of bank-related scams to avoid falling victim to them, the SA Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) said on Tuesday.

"We want to warn customers to be vigilant during the festive season, especially around scams that promise you huge returns with minimal effort," chief executive Kalyani Pillay said in a statement.

These included "advance fee scams", where the victim receives an sms or e-mail informing them that they have won a prize and urging them to contact someone in order to claim it.

However, the fraudster would try to convince the victim that they need to pay a fee in order to claim the prize.

The public was also warned of deposit and refund scams, where criminals ordered goods or services from a company or person then deposited money - or frequently a fraudulent cheque - as payment.

The criminals often send "proof of payment" for the release of the purchased item, or urgently request a refund.

When the bank processes the cheque, thus discovering it is invalid, or if it is discovered that no payment was made, the credit on the victim's bank account is reversed.

As a result, no funds are transferred into the victim's account and the victim is left with neither the money nor the goods. Sabric advised the public to follow the maxim "If something seems too good to be true, then it probably is".

"Fraudsters often use the names of reputable companies to try to con people into believing that their scams are legitimate," Pillay said.

"Do not accept unsolicited communications at face value."

  • allison.h.abbey - 2014-10-21 16:23

    If people are dumb enough to believe they have won etc, then they must accept the consequences. Are people sooooo DOF??

      Ken Rudolph - 2014-10-21 18:48

      @Allison - To answer your question "YES"!

  • Joan Mbele - 2014-10-21 18:07

    South Africans still believe in miracles n quick rich scheme. Tgey also believe in witch craft. They believe in witchdoctors n crook pastors.Hahaaaaa. walala wasala. This faith thing is such a dangerous game. People go to ATM not vigilante. Look around first. Check the ATM thoroughly-for cameras n false keyboard which I understand they remove the original one n place theirs. Somewhere somehow u will c the tempared one. Good luck.

  • victor.downing.37 - 2014-10-21 18:50

    It amazes me that all honest people are FICA proof yet these criminals work around it. Makes one think.

  • Siva Naidoo - 2014-10-22 07:19

    South African Banks do not verify any benificiary details and criminals are aware of this and are taking advantage of this loop hole in the banking online systems. More verification and safer online systems are needed in SA to curb crime.

  • Chris Brinkworth - 2014-10-22 12:55

    i realizes this is not the place but is there or should news 24 not consider have aial reporting page for services from banks my current online banking is taken for ever to log in or is it just me They the banks feel nothing for the consumers all the risks are passed on to the consumers

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