Jan 31, 2023

Mawazo Writing Africa

Writing about the main

Money mules, impersonation scams and fake CVs on the rise

A significant increase in fraud is being recorded as criminals take advantage of a high-risk environment, says the Southern African Fraud Prevention Service (SAFPS).

“This is of particular concern given the economic climate that we are in said CEO Manie van Schalkwyk.

“Consumers face a significant cycle of high inflation and are looking for ways to make ends meet. This makes them increasingly vulnerable to fraud and fraud.”

When comparing the first five months of 2022 to the same period in 2021, the service said the risk of money muling increased by 97%.< /p>

This is when a person approaches another person and asks if they can use their account to send money to a relative in another country.

” While this should be an immediate red flag, you’d be surprised how many people willingly comply in the hope that they can help,” said Van Schalkwyk.

“Unfortunately, this opens the door to scammers, derive significant benefits from their victim.”

To prevent this from happening, Van Schalkwyk urged people to be very careful with their banking information.

“The person in front of you may be in real need. However, they can also be scammers.”

He said that biometrics add a particularly sophisticated layer of security to try to prevent financial crime. However, this makes scammers more persistent and increases public involvement.

“Imitation has always been a major crime in South Africa, with scammers taking advantage of their victims through phishing, smishing and vishing. Identity theft increased by 264% in the first five months of the year compared to 2021 and could be linked to recent major data breaches.”

Fake documents are also on the rise.

< p>The service said SA has one of the highest reported unemployment rates in the world at 34.5%.

“To improve employability, we are seeing a rise in misqualifications, which increased by 158% from reported cases has 2021.”

Gauteng is the economic hub and the province with the highest fraud statistics. The province accounts for 62% of all fraud cases in the country. The number of fraud incidents recorded in 2022 increased by 117% compared to the number of incidents reported in 2021.

The Western Cape, which accounted for 8% of the country’s total fraud incidents, saw a 133% increase.

KwaZulu-Natal contributed 18% to fraud incidents in 2021. According to SAFPS, the number of incidents reported there increased by 106% this year.

The service offers consumers free protection tools against fraud.

Support independent journalism by subscribing to The Sunday Times. Only 20 R for the first month.