How to Report SASSA Fraud for Common Scams

SASSA (South African Social Security Agency) grants are a lifeline for many South Africans, providing essential financial assistance to the elderly, disabled, and caregivers, among others.

GroundUp reports an incident where someone’s daughter’s details were used to apply for the grant. To top it up, Businesstech also reported that the Office of the Auditor-General identified that at least 5,812 public servants fraudulently applied for and received the R350 SRD grant, at a cost of R5.8-million in 2021.

We’ve also received an inquiry from someone asking for access to their account because they used their ID number illegally to apply for the grant.

“I want to check the the number that use my ID for apply”

It clearly indicates that these grants have been targeted by scammers who prey on vulnerable beneficiaries.

Some of the common SASSA grant scams in South Africa.

Common SASSA Scams to Avoid

1. Fake SMS and Emails

Beneficiaries receive messages claiming they need to update their details or risk losing their grant. These messages may include links that lead to fake Sassa websites where personal details can be stolen.

2. Unofficial Card Swaps

Scammers approach beneficiaries offering to help them swap their old Sassa cards for new ones. In the process, they may steal money or redirect grants to their accounts.

3. Bogus Officials

Scammers pretend to be Sassa officials offering to assist with grant applications or to expedite payment. They often ask for a fee or the beneficiary’s personal details.

4. Loan Offers

Some unscrupulous individuals offer “loans” to grant recipients, using their Sassa cards as collateral. Once the card is handed over, they withdraw the grant or a significant portion of it as a “repayment.”

5. Illegal Deductions

Some companies offer services or goods and then make unauthorized monthly deductions from the beneficiary’s grant. While not a scam in the traditional sense, it’s a significant issue because these deductions can be hard to stop.

6. ATM and Paypoint Scams

At ATMs or paypoints, scammers might watch beneficiaries enter their PINs and then steal their cards or approach them under the guise of being helpful, only to swap or steal their cards.

7. Phishing Calls

Beneficiaries receive calls from individuals posing as Sassa officials. They claim they’re verifying details or addressing a problem with the beneficiary’s grant, only to collect personal information or trick the beneficiary into revealing their PIN.

8. Fake Job Offers

Some scams target the general public by advertising fake job opportunities at Sassa, asking applicants to pay an “application” or “training” fee.

How to Report SASSA Fraud Scam

If you suspect any fraud on your grant, you must report it immediately to SASSA.

You can submit the following for SASSA fraud at the post office in person or to this email [email protected].

  1. A completed SASSA fraud affidavit form;
  2. Certified copy of the ID (if it is the smart card ID then both sides should be copied);
  3. Certified copy of their SASSA cards (both sides should be copied);
  4. The SASSA fraud affidavit forms, may be obtained from any SASSA or Post Office.

To avoid falling victim to these scams, you should always be suspicious of unsolicited offers or requests coming through to your email and SMSs.

You must never share your card PINs, OTPs, or personal details unless certain of the requester’s identity, and always use official channels to communicate with Sassa.

Most importantly, you must frequently verify your contact details on the grant to ensure SASSA can communicate with you for any future updates.

For more information contact the SASSA toll-free number on 0800 60 10 11 or 013 574 9428/9363 from 08:00 – 16:00 during weekdays Monday – Friday.

Raising awareness: Share your story to prevent others from falling for the same scam.

In today’s interconnected world, one of the most powerful tools at our disposal is our own experience. Sharing personal stories about scams not only serves as a cautionary tale for others but also helps humanize the faceless statistics about scam victims.

It’s one thing to hear that thousands fall prey to fraud, but hearing a personal account brings the reality of the threat much closer to home.

By coming forward and sharing your experience, you:

  • Break the Silence: Many victims of scams often remain silent due to feelings of embarrassment or guilt. By speaking out, you can inspire others to do the same, breaking the stigma associated with being scammed.
  • Highlight Specific Tactics: Personal stories can reveal the nuanced tactics scammers use, making others more adept at recognizing and avoiding them.
  • Provide Emotional Support: Knowing that others have been through a similar ordeal can offer solace to victims and can foster a supportive community atmosphere. It’s a reminder that they are not alone.
  • Press for Change: Hearing about scams firsthand can inspire action. It might lead to increased preventative measures, stricter regulations, or improved support for victims.

Educate and inform: Share knowledge with friends and family.

Knowledge is our first line of defense against scams. The more we know, the harder it becomes for fraudsters to deceive us.

However, this isn’t just about personal knowledge.

The ripple effect of sharing crucial information with our loved ones amplifies our collective defense against deception.

Benefits of educating and informing your circle include:

  • Creating a Safety Net: By ensuring that your loved ones are informed, you’re creating a safety net around your community. An informed friend or family member might recognize a scam that targets another loved one, thereby preventing potential harm.
  • Building a Culture of Openness: Regularly discussing scams and sharing knowledge encourages an environment where people feel comfortable talking about their concerns, doubts, or suspicious encounters without fear of judgment.
  • Strengthening Bonds: Protecting one another is a fundamental human instinct. By taking the initiative to educate your friends and family, you’re not only showing that you care about their well-being, but you’re also fortifying the trust and bond between you.
  • Empowering Decision-Making: With the right knowledge, people can make informed decisions when confronted with potential scams. This not only means recognizing fraudulent schemes but also knowing how to respond, who to report to, and where to seek help if needed.

In essence, sharing knowledge and experiences is like inoculating your community against the disease of deception.

Every story shared, every piece of information passed along, strengthens the collective armor against scams.

Share your experiences on all platforms at your disposal, social media is by far the perfect platform to share stories with the world.

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