In the face of the current explosion of scams reaching you through emails, sms’s and advertisements, it is evident that many unsuspecting people are getting lured into webs leading to financial disaster.
Scamming or phishing, as it is also called, is a plot aimed at getting you to hand over your banking details by falsely tempting you into believing that you are dealing with an authentic and genuine company or person.
A common scam doing the rounds is the SARS Phishing Scam which advises you on an email that you have a refund due to you and you should set up your banking details with the sender to claim the funds.
The email uses the SARS logo and looks credible. However, it is a fraudster trying to convince you that you are dealing with the Receiver of Revenue.
Here are three “Don’ts” which will keep the criminals at bay:
Don’t be so trusting
You need to be more suspicious about your financial transactions. Especially, having received a communication from out of the blue congratulating you on some fantastic win which you never expected!
Many scams promise things that are too good to be true. You should the attitude that there is no such thing as a “Get Rich Quick” scheme.You should too aware that there are criminals in this world eager to take advantage of you. Sad but unfortunately true. So if in doubt opt out!
Don’t give out your details
It sounds so obvious, doesn’t it? Yet the continuous bombardment of scams reaching us for all angles suggests that scammers realise that there are many of us that are willing to give out our banking details without batting an eyelid.
Banks and Financial Institutions will never ask you to provide your banking details on an email or an SMS. So, the moment you find yourself being persuaded to providing these details you should stop the process.
The internet creates an opportunistic platform for criminals to use your bank account. They can be in and out of your account in seconds, long before you even realise that your money has been stolen.
Don’t leave it
When you come across a scam you should report it to the institution that the scam is pretending to be. You can also post it on a useful website at www.scambuster.co.za which creates awareness of scams in South Africa. Don’t fall over when you see what scams are going on out there.
Let your own social network know about scams that you come across so that more of us can be made aware of what is going on. Talking about scams should sharpen our senses and make us more diligent then next time someone tries to steal our money. Being aware is probably our best defence towards being scammed
Listen to the full conversation from the Weekend Breakfast with Africa and Sam: