The scam involves the public receiving a phone call from a person claiming to be from the customs divisions of the Post Office.
The mysterious caller then informs them of a parcel that is ready for collection however they are instructed to first pay money into an account. According to the caller the money is for custom duties and courier fees.
Consumers are then directed to a website that appears similar to the speed service website. However the phone number has the UK code +44. Customers are then given a pin which they have to enter before they can “track” the parcel.
The Post Office does not use pin numbers for its tracking services and does not require customers to make any payments before parcels are given.
However, in certain cases where a SA Revenue Service levy import tax on parcels from abroad the import tax must be paid at the Post Office counter when it’s collected.
“We are urging the public to please not fall for this scam. We would like to also reiterate that the Post Office does not ask for any deposits. Only in the case of custom parcels do we let customers know beforehand,” Martie Gilchrist, spokesperson for the Post Office in the Western Cape said.
Last year the Post Office issued another warning informing customers of a scam which people are duped into handing over huge sums of money into a fraudulent Postbank account.
The scam dubbed the so-called 419 scam is an off-line social manufacturing ploy where people receive a sealed package along with a certificate claiming that a large deposit has been made into a Postbank account.
To activate this account you have to pay a certain amount of cash into another account.
“We advised that the public take extra caution and urging members of the public with any information regarding the scam to either call the police or the Post Office crime buster hotline 0800020070.” Gilchrist said.