Brand with a purpose
    15 November 2016


    Avoid identity fraud and protect yourself online

    The 13th of November marked the start of International Fraud Awareness Week.

    Fraud Awareness Week (13 November to 19 November) is a global initiative to help minimise the impact of fraud and promote education on topics that affect consumers. To join the fight against fraud, Vodacom has registered as supporters of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners

    Read on to find out more about identity fraud and how you can avoid becoming a victim.

    Identity fraud is on the rise

    Identity theft is not an urban myth. 

    According to the SA Fraud Prevention Services (SAFPS), the number of victims of impersonation or identity fraud is rising in South Africa. Thanks to technological advances that have given fraudsters access to more sources of victims' personal information, they are now better at covering their tracks and are able to make their methods more sophisticated so they can defraud people on a global scale.

    It could happen to anyone

    Identity theft is not an urban myth. 

    The reality is that every individual or business is vulnerable to theft of their personal or corporate information. Identity fraud usually starts with the theft of personal information or documents, often through snatching wallets and purses, searching through waste bins for discarded documents, stealing mail and sometimes breaking into vehicles and homes. 

    Beware of phishing scams

    Fraudsters may also try to trick the victim into revealing information – both personal and business – through a social engineering technique known as ‘phishing’. A ‘phishing’ scam usually begins with an email, text message or an unexpected call that appears to be from a legitimate source and usually requires the victim to provide or update personal details including bank account details, passwords, and so on. Fraudsters then impersonate the victim, sometimes even presenting fake supporting documents from bank statements to payslips in the victim’s name. They can then take over or open new financial and other accounts in the victim’s name, apply for loans and credit cards, purchase goods and services, and so on.

    Precautions to take

    • Keep your personal information and your company's customer and business information confidential at all times.
    • Never share or give out this information to any party unless it is a trusted source and they are authorised to receive it.
    • Confirm the truth of claims, advertisements or communications you receive, especially where they seem suspicious or out of the ordinary. 
    • Always safeguard and secure documents containing confidential information, both in hard copy and electronic formats.
    • Maintain careful records, and dispose of documents safely by shredding or destroying them.

    If you are aware of or have any suspicions regarding serious instances of theft, fraud or related irregularities, this can be reported to Vodacom's independently managed Speak Up Hotline service by dialling 0800 990 520, toll-free from a landline.


    An extra level of protection with the My Vodacom App

    Introducing voice password authentication to the My Vodacom smartphone app for Android and iOS users