How To Identify And Avoid Scammers

  • Post Date
    Mon Mar 01 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has created even more opportunities for scammers to target people.

Phishing is a cybercrime in which a person is contacted via email, telephone or text message by someone posing as a legitimate institution, like your bank for example.

This is to persuade U to hand over sensitive data such as personally identifiable information, banking, credit card details, and passwords.

Very often fake websites can look very real! They are specifically designed to catch you out and steal your secret information by asking you to type in the username and password of your bank account for example.

The information is then used to access important accounts and can result in identity theft and financial loss.

Be smart! U can spot scammers if u pay attention. We know that U may be eagerly awaiting feedback on a loan or a grant, and may want it right away, but beware! Don’t enter any of your information unless you are 100% sure that it is real and has been verified by us. Often criminals use even simple platforms and tricks to get U to give up your details.

Types of Scams

  • Phishing: Phishing is where scammers get your info such as your email address and send U a mail with an attachment. When U click on it, U are then linked to a fraudulent website that asks U to input details. The website may look like your bank’s for example, but there will always be something a little different in the spelling in the search bar.
  • Vishing: Vishing is a combination of the word Phishing and Voice. Just like it sounds, scammers will use your info that they have stolen online to give U a phone call. U will then be asked to disclose certain private details. The caller often creates a sense of urgency in order to pressure U into giving out passwords or pins. Banks will never contact customers over the phone and request sensitive passwords. If U experience this, call your bank right away to report it.
  • Smishing: Smishing is similar to the two scamming methods mentioned above, but is done over SMS or a messaging software such as Whatsapp. The message will often instruct the reader to call a number due to unauthorised transactions on their account. During the COVID-19 pandemic, smishing messages often revolve around government grants.

Channels That Scammers Use To Contact U

Scammers may use various channels to contact U, depending on what their technique is. Here are the main three to be watchful on.

  • SMS: One of the most common methods is to send U an SMS claiming to be from a bank. This message will often have incorrect spelling or grammar, as well as not being in exactly the same format as the ones that U usually get. If U are in doubt, always phone the Ubank call center on 086000 8322. Never dial the USSD code that they provide unless we have guaranteed that it is correct.
  • Email: U may receive an email from a seemingly secure looking Ubank site. The email will have an attachment that will take U to a page that is designed to capture all of your details. The email itself will state that your grant has been approved, or they just need a bit more information to approve your grant. Do not click on the attachment, and report the email immediately.
  • Telephone: Scammers may actually call U. Usually, the call will be of an urgent nature, and they will pressure You into revealing private details. Never give any details over the phone to anyone. If you receive such a call, contact the bank and report it immediately on 086000 8322.

How To Avoid Scammers

Keep Informed

Stay up to date with the newest phishing scams. U will be less likely to be caught if U are informed.

Don’t Just Click

Taking a moment to really think about what U are about to click on will also make a huge difference. We often simply click on a link automatically. Pause before U do, and consider whether the link is genuine or not.

Never Give Out Personal Information

Never give out your personal info to anyone, unless U have verified who they are. No bank will ask for private details over the phone, nor on a website. Make sure that the website that U are on is not fake A secure website will always start with “https”

Remember that Ubank will never ask you to do any of the following things via email, telephone or any message:

  • Request that you open an email attachment, or click on any links.
  • Request your username and password
  • Request your PIN or any other password
  • Request your One Time Pin (OTP)

Scammers are everywhere. They are especially active right now, taking advantage of the  COVID-19 pandemic relief funds Stay safe, and be sure that U don’t fall prey to scammers.

For more information on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and what steps U can take to protect Yourself and your loved ones, visit www.sacoronavirus.co.za.

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