Home Affairs Minister, Ayanda Dlodlo, has warned members of the public to be vigilant against criminal syndicates operating on social networks.
According to the Minister, the impostors create numerous fake accounts, not just for misinformation and to compromise personal data, which are common mischiefs on social media, but to extort money from unsuspecting patrons.
About a week ago, a fake account bearing the name of Minister Dlodlo was created as a platform to solicit money through a purported contract deal to the amount of R25 million.
The “deal” is said to be a business venture between Minister Dlodlo and another Cabinet minister, where a member of the public is asked for certain kind of information to qualify for a share of 50 percent in the purported transaction.
“The Minister of Home Affairs is not involved in any deal of the nature described in this fake correspondence. In addition, the Department of Home Affairs will also never ask people to pay money through social media for any of their services and anyone who comes across such requests should report these to the authorities,” the Minister said.
She said the department has detected and reported incidents of fake social media accounts attempting to solicit money from members to the Hawks for investigation.
Minister Dlodlo warned those who are involved in this illegal activity that the law will come down hard on them.
“Social media networks are critical platforms for information flow and exchange around the globe. These are also dangerous hunting grounds for cyber criminals who are sparing no effort in using easy access to these networks for their nefarious deeds.”
The Minister further urged members of the public who want to access online services offered by the department always to verify their sources using the security mechanisms provided by the department.