Fraudsters pose as Sars officials

Xolile Bhengu

Xolile Bhengu

South Africans are falling prey and losing thousands of rand to a scam involving fraudsters who pose as South African Revenue Service (Sars) officials.

The South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) yesterday urged businesses and individuals to be vigilant against fraudsters claiming that an alleged mistaken deposit from Sars had been deposited into the victim's bank account.

Sabric said the fraudsters were using an evolved version of the deposit and refund scam, in which a deposit is made to a victim's account with a bad cheque.

The victim would then be contacted by the fraudster informing them that the deposit had been an error and requesting a return of the funds, providing their banking details for the refund.

The victim would only be aware that they had been scammed after their bank returned the bounced cheque.

Sabric's head of the commercial crime office, Susan Potgieter, advised people to verify the deposit error by contacting their creditors and suppliers directly.

She said banks advised anyone who had fallen prey to the deposit scam to report it to the police.