A scammer attempted to steal a woman’s identity after contacting their employers with a fake letter from a bank.
Image via Pixabay/ Twitter

‘Almost lost a whole salary’: Scammer sends fake bank letter to HR

A scammer sent a fake notification letter requesting a change of banking details to one local woman’s HR department…


A scammer attempted to steal a woman’s identity after contacting their employers with a fake letter from a bank.
Image via Pixabay/ Twitter

Scammers are developing new ways to dupe South Africans out of their hard-earned cash, going as far as to contact employers in the hopes of unknowingly changing their victim’s bank details.

That’s exactly what happened to one local female, who revealed how her salary almost ended up in the wrong hands.

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In a tweet posted on Thursday, a woman named Getrude Makhafola revealed how she almost got scammed – with a fake letter from her bank!

The woman tweeted: “Scammer emailed HR, pretending to be me requested change of my banking details. @CapitecBankSA confirmation letter looks like it’s mine, but it’s not”.

In the letter, the scammer attempted to impersonate the woman, “confirming” the change of their banking details, into which her salary is paid.

Luckily for the woman, her employers had a strict policy when it comes to banking detail changes.

She continued: “Fortunately, the HR manager doesn’t allow this through email or phone, you have to come in person”.

She added: “I almost lost my whole salary come end October, scammers are determined”.

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And it seems that the scam is not the first of its kind.

One tweep shared in the comments: “This literally happened to me this past month but HR also didn’t process it”. Another tweep shared a graph of how cybercriminals were stepping up their antics.

Others praised the woman’s HR department who declined to process the “bank letter”.

@BelindaaPheto: “This looks so legit, kudos to your HR. It’s really scary and looks like a very sophisticated operation. Scammers don’t get tired

@PretoriaProudly: “So this scammer investigated everything about you to the extent of wanting to change your account. HR said not today Satan”

@Bafana_Bucs1: “Vigilant HR! These scams have some serious information on many South Africans….please stay alert out there”



According to the South African Banking Risk Information Centre (SABRIC), cybercriminals are looking at new ways to steal your cash – especially with the festive season at our doorsteps

This involves identity theft and elaborate ways of accessing your cash – including fraudsters attempting to defraud your insurance, medical aid, Unemployment Insurance Fund, and in the case above, even your employers.

“In some instances, they impersonate you, and using social engineering, access your bank accounts and do transactions”, the organisation added.

If you suspect you have been a victim of identity theft, here’s how to protect yourself, says SABRIC…

  • Do not use any information that may have been compromised. Rather use other personal information that you have not used previously to confirm your identity in the future.
  • Register a new email account. Implement dual authentication for all accounts and products, especially for financial services products.
  • Register for SMS notifications to alert you when products and accounts are accessed.
  • Conduct regular credit checks to verify whether someone has applied for credit using your personal information and if so, advise the credit grantor immediately.
  • Investigate and register for credit-related alerts offered by credit bureaus.
  • Check your bank statements regularly.