Amanzimtoti police warn against online scams

AMANZIMTOTI police warn the community to become increasingly cautious as fraudsters and scams abound when one purchases items, especially online.

Ensure you see what you are purchasing before you pay for it and that you are satisfied.

“Phishing and fraud scams are methods of deceitfully obtaining personal information such as passwords, identity numbers and credit card details. Scamsters carry out their crimes by calling, sending emails or cell phone messages that look like they come from trusted sources, such as banks or legitimate companies,” explained Amanzimtoti SAPS communication and liason officer, Capt Charlene van der Spuy.

Read also: Protect yourself against identity theft

“Typically, these emails or cell phone messages request that users click on a link in an email, which will direct users to a spoofed website – a site designed to fool users into thinking that it is legitimate – to obtain, verify or update contact details or other sensitive financial information. These emails and messages also contain a telephone number and contact person whom you should call, as you are promised you could win large sums of money.”

Read also: Be warned – Microsoft scam resurfaces

What you should do to prevent falling victim to scams and fraud

The simple tips below will help you protect yourself and your family from scams. Scams can cost people a lot of money and cause a great deal of distress.

  • Never respond to emails or cell phone messages appearing to be from your bank, which request your personal details. Remember that no bank will ever ask you to confirm or update your account details by email.
  • Never provide your online ID, password or PIN to anyone and never write them down or share them.
  • Do not save your internet banking password on your desktop.
  • Do not leave your computer unattended after you have entered your internet banking password.
  • Always log or sign off at the end of a session.
  • Avoid doing internet banking in public areas such as internet cafés, or on any computer which can be accessed by people you do not know.
  • Change your PIN and passwords frequently.
  • Put sensible transaction limits on your accounts.
  • Only provide your credit card details to reputable companies.
  • If it looks too good to be true, it usually is.
  • Members must apply precautionary measures when they purchase items online. It is advisable to verify if the company is registered.
  • Never send money or give credit card or online account details to anyone you do not know and trust.

The police are committed in creating a safe and secure environment for all people in South Africa, which can only be achieved if individuals and communities co-operate by volunteering information on criminals and their activities.


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Holly Konig

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