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If you’re selling something, confirm payment with your bank before releasing the goods, and if you don’t remember entering a competition or buying a lottery ticket, you haven’t won anything. The 419 heartbreaker scam The 419 scams have been around since the dawn of the internet, the oldest one speaking of an inheritance worth billions that the sender is due, but your bank account details are needed to deposit the funds, in return for which you’ll get a percentage. In a recent episode of M-Net’s Carte Blanche, Monique Roeloffse nearly got scammed by after meeting “Josef Werner” on an online dating site.

Another oldie is the e-mail from Western Union telling of a “deposit” into your account and requiring your personal information. After romancing her for a few weeks, he came up with a story that he’d been in a submarine accident and had lost all his money.

“The website page that I clicked on to looked exactly the same as my bank’s site, and I even received an RVN number (a one-time PIN) on my cellphone, so I thought it was all legitimate.

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In all these attacks, it’s your banking information that the fraudsters are after. Smishing SA has one of the highest cellphone penetration rates in the world, so it’s a wide open field for the SMS version of phishing.“However, it is still worth knowing about, and if your cellphone ever stops working for no reason, you should assume the worst and contact your bank and network operator immediately.” 7.Credit card skimming Card skimming is a global problem and usually takes place when fraudsters capture card data on devices similar to those used for legitimate point-of-sale or ATM transactions.The first line of defence against any SMS fraud is to diligently check your phone bills for any unusual amounts being deducted. “You also need to check the permissions that you grant the application on installation: you should be sceptical if a basic game, for instance, requires access to address books and the internet, or needs the ability to send SMSes,” says Streicher. SIM swops One of the outcomes of a phishing scam could be a SIM swop.The fraudster already has your cellphone number and can get enough additional information to request a SIM swop from your network operator.

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