Southern African Fraud Prevention Service to launch platform to combat fraud

File photo: SAPS (Twitter)

File photo: SAPS (Twitter)

Published May 11, 2023


Johannesburg - According to statistics from the Southern African Fraud Prevention Service (SAFPS), there was a 600% increase in incidents of fraud reported by its members in 2022 when compared with 2018.

In its role as the South African custodian of fraud prevention, SAFPS has decided to take decisive action to tackle the problem that scams are posing to South Africa’s economy.

“We need to establish a proactive approach to combating fraud and scams,” said Nazia Karrim, head of product development at the SAFPS.

In response to the growing need for a proactive approach to fraud prevention, the SAFPS is developing a product called Yima.

“Once launched, the product’s website will be a one-stop shop for South Africans to report scams, secure their identity and scan any website for vulnerabilities related to scams. They will also be able to educate themselves on identifying a scam. These tools will enable consumers to surf the net more confidently and go about their daily lives aware and informed. These are just some exciting elements South Africans can access through the site,” says Karrim.

The SAFPS said the opportunity to report a fraud occurrence or other suspicious activity to the SAFPS would be the website’s key feature. This suspicious activity includes a fake or suspect-looking online shopping website or portal and instances where the user has received phoney banking information.

The SAFPS added that law-enforcement would receive a compilation of these reports for an investigation, and a scam hotline would be made available to users, allowing them to report a fraud incidence to their banks, retailers or insurance providers all at once.

Additionally, Yima users will have access to the consumer products and services offered by the SAFPS.

“The most unique element of Yima is the ability to provide the consumer with the tools to be proactive when preventing scams and the services to assist them when they fall victim to a scam. This will make a significant difference in the war on scams. Empowering the consumer is key to prevention,” says Karrim.

“Additionally, Yima will have a newsroom portal with reports and case studies about these scams so that the public can be warned about them.”

The SAFPS said it was collaborating with local and international industry stakeholders to create a powerful product that would be released in June following extensive beta testing.

The Star