The Junk Mail team has warned you about the “Switch Off Cell Phone” scam before. It seems that the scammers have intensified their efforts with this in recent times. South African Cellphone provider, Vodacom has noted that SIM swop fraud attempts are on the rise in the country. Scammers are getting persistent in defrauding Internet Banking clients who make use of Vodacom.
Fraudsters who engage in SIM swop fraud are posing as cellphone company representatives in an attempt to fool customers who end up being victims of internet banking fraud. SIM swop fraud is a technique used by criminals to defraud unsuspecting internet banking users. Once they have acquired the victim’s banking details and other personal information through phishing scams, the fraudsters then call the network operator posing as the customer and request a SIM swop. According to Vodacom, this will cancel the customer’s SIM connection and the fraudsters will access to the customer’s mobile line. This enables the criminal to receive the customer’s one time internet banking password which allows them to perform fraudulent internet banking transactions.
In order to protect customers from SIM swop fraud, Vodacom notifies customers via SMS whenever a SIM swop attempt is made. Fraudsters have resorted to calling customers to try to either convince them to switch off their phones for an extended period of time or try and convince them to ignore the SMS from the network operator.
South African cell phone users should note that Vodacom will never call their customers and ask them to switch off their cellphones unless they have requested assistance with a handset related issue that requires their cellphones to be switched off. If Vodacom users have not logged a fault with the mobile operator they should be suspicious of any requests to switch off their cellphone. If a customer receives an SMS notification indicating that they have requested a SIM swop, they should ignore any further communication and immediately contact Vodacom and they will take the necessary steps to protect them.
This notice was posted on the My Broadband website on the 22nd of June 2012.
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