As the lockdown hit, fraud incidents looks like they are on the increase as fraudsters continue to find new, innovative ways to circumvent security features and scam unsuspecting consumers.
The last thing anyone wants to experience is the horrid nightmare that comes with receiving a bank notification alerting them that all the money in their account has been wiped out - particularly when said transaction happened without their authorisation.
Sadly, criminals everywhere do not sleep and a few people and plenty of people have fallen victim to many banking scams which have seen them go through the inconvenience of trying to get refunded by their banks, often unsuccessfully so.
SIM-swap fraud happens when someone convinces your mobile operator to switch your phone number over to a SIM card that a criminal possesses. In some cases, there are carrier's employees working together with criminals. With the malayitshas, the scammers wait until the malayitsha crosses the border to Zimbabwe and his number if offline. They then approach the mobile operator to switch your phone number over to a SIM card that a criminal possesses. Like in the case I will narrate below, the Malayitsha went to Zimbabwe to spend the lockdown time in Zimbabwe.
By diverting your incoming SMS messages, scammers can easily complete the text-based two-factor authentication checks that protect your most sensitive accounts in financial services, social networks, webmail services and instant messengers.
Scammers first obtain the victim's internet banking details through phishing emails.
This personal information is used to pose as the victim in requesting a sim swap from the mobile network provider.
As they have access to all this information - including the calls and texts intended to go to the victim's cellphone number - the perps can now access the One Time Pin sent by the bank in order to authorise whatever transaction they intend to make, which is more often than not, cleaning out the bank account.
Now my story:
This unfortunate fraudster, we normally call them obhotshman, calls my number unfortunately I did not hear the phone coming through. I had to to return the call some 30 minutes later.
The guy picks up the phone and suddenly tells me that he is Mgcini Dlamini number 078,315,0759, a malayitsha I happen to know. He tells me that he is carrying border jumpers and has ran out of money because of roadblocks. He jumps on to say, I can deposit the funds at Spar, Shoprite or send an ewallet. Suddenly I became suspicious because I tend to follow the malayitsha business closely as I have an interest and I am aware that it has been impossible for the malayitshas to cross the border. This bhotshman then tells me that he has a flue that's why his voice is not normal. After realising that he has failed to convince me, he dropped the call after telling me that its a wrong number. I tried the same number an hour later to confront the bhotshman, initially he insisted that he is indeed Mgcini after telling him that I just called Mgcini and he told me that he is still in Zimbabwe the botshman suddenly changed his story and said he is the one who brought Mgcini's phone back to South Africa and suddenly the phone went quite.
Fortunately for me it was not the first time I have had an encounter with such a scammer. One foolish one once called me and name dropped a malayitsha I work with, fortunately I had spoken to the malayitsha and I was on my way to Polokwane. Same modus operandi, the guy calls and claims to be desperately looking for small cash to make it possible to evade cops and wanted me to deposit the money with these retailers (Spar or Shoprite or an ewallet). I asked the guy where he was and he told me he was somewhere in Johannesburg. This then sold him out completely because the malayitsha he pretended to be had left Zimbabwe in the afternoon and had not even crossed the border.
To all those who send stuff via omalayitsha beware these scammers are real.
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