“Stop scammers in their tracks by educating yourself about them” – Police

The Linden police are encouraging the public not to fall into the trap of various scams.

Constable Takalani Matumba, spokesperson for the station said, “It is important to be aware of the tell-tale signs of these scams so that you can be suspicious and avoid falling victim to them before they take advantage of you.”

Matumba highlighted five popular scams that the police have received numerous reports about.

Selling goods online

“Scammers target people who are selling their valuables online.

What they will tell you is that they are unavailable to pick up your goods and that they will have to pay you your money via an electronic transfer.

Once you have sent your goods to them, or they have been collected, the scammers reverse the transfer, claiming their money back and keeping your goods,” Matumba said.

Sellers should try their best to meet in a safe and secure environment, and try to accept cash payments.


Banking account information message

“Scammers will send you a fake message either via email or SMS claiming that they are your bank and that your account number and other information has been changed.

If you fall victim to this, you will end up paying money into the scammer’s temporary account, and you will lose your money.

If you receive messages like this, always be suspicious and query them with your bank.”


Phone blocking

“This is related to other scams, where you hand over account details and other information to scammers, who are then able to block your phone via your network provider with this information.

When they are withdrawing funds from your account, you cannot see this happening, so you cannot take the necessary steps to stop it with your bank.”

It is advised that if you find that your phone has been blocked, you should call your service provider immediately.


Fake loans

“This scam works by people applying for loans at fake companies.

The company will say that their loan has been approved, regardless of the amount, and that they will need the person to pay an initiation fee to receive the loan.

The person will pay the fee, but no money will come to them.”


Internet blackmail

“Some people will be in contact with others on social media who will request lewd images of them.

The scammer will then be in possession of this image, telling the victim that they will send the images to their friends and family if money is not paid into their account.”

People are advised never to send provocative images of themselves to others online users, particularly if they do not know the person.

Matumba added that all fraud cases such as these need to be reported to the police via the same channels as any other crime.

Details: Linden Police Station 011 888 9299.

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