E2 Festive Season- Personal information fraud

04/12/2023 | By Admin

As the world gets more sophisticated with the rapid advance of technology, so do the tactics of fraudsters. Fraudsters are always finding new, innovative ways to swindle unsuspecting victims out of their hard-earned money. And with the festive season it is important for the public to be extra cautious.

According to the Banking Association of South Africa, identity theft is one of the leading contributors to successful fraud. Identity theft is a type of fraud which involves stealing money or gaining other benefits by acquiring personal information and pretending to be someone else.

How not to become a personal information fraud victim

  • Do not disclose personal information over the internet or telephonically, without knowing exactly who you are disclosing the information to and what it will be used for.
  • Be careful when you enter competitions or answer surveys because sometimes these are scams to source your information.
  • Carefully consider the information you disclose n social media.
  • Do not carry all your ID documentation with you, unless absolutely necessary.
  • Never give out an OTP number that has been sent to an unknown person over the phone.
  • Do not click on hyperlinks from unknown numbers or emails.
  • At the ATM do not allow anyone to assist you.
  • Ensure your pin is hidden at all times.

If you or a loved one falls victim to identity theft, follow these steps:

  • Report the crime to the police immediately.
  • Notify your bank, insurance company and other entities where you currently are a client.
  • Notify the party that issues the stolen document(s) such as the Department of Home Affairs for passports and ID books and the Traffic and Licensing Department for driver’s licenses.
  • If you suspect that your mail may have been stolen, diverted or tampered with, contact the post office.
  • Contact the South African Fraud Prevention Services (SAFPS) for assistance if you are a victim of ID theft (SAFPS Help-Line number is 0860 101 248).