social grants April

Social grants are set to increase on 1 April 2023. Image: Sassa.

SASSA payments: Watch out for these festive season scams

SASSA has urged beneficiaries to be vigilant of criminals, scammers and misleading information as the festive season approaches.

social grants April

Social grants are set to increase on 1 April 2023. Image: Sassa.

The South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) has called for all grant beneficiaries not to provide their personal details to anyone and to be vigilant of misleading information as the festive season approaches. 

SASSA spokesperson, Paseka Letsatsi said it is the vulnerable members of society that are prone to becoming targets to scammers and criminals.

New date for the release of beneficiaries’ money 

SASSA has also reminded beneficiaries that their monies for December will be available as early as the 28 November 2019 and their money for the month of January will be released on the 31 December 2019. 

“This thing of us releasing money early, to the old people in particular, is for them to avoid the rush. We know that there are those who take advantage and will call beneficiaries demanding their pin codes, asking for their ID numbers. 

They will say, we’re calling from SASSA, can you please give us your pin code, we are trying to verify certain things,” added Letsatsi. 

SASSA has made clear that beneficiaries should know that they will at no stage call them and ask for their personal information. 

Scammers within SASSA

Letsatsi said that nothing else will change, except the new dates that the money will be released. 

“There will be no other changes, other than the December payment happening slightly earlier than usual. So nobody should be calling you asking you anything, just know it’s a scam,” said Letsatsi.  

According to Letsatsi, there are individuals within SASSA who have been identified and suspended because they were colluding with members of the public to take people’s information and get money. 

“There’s a trend. All the money was being deducted at 12:05, at the same ATM so we’ve managed to identify those individuals. Slowly but surely, we are arresting people and beneficiaries should definitely enjoy their grant,” added Letsatsi.  

Syndicates all over South Africa 

An SABC News anchor brought up syndicates said to be operating in Kwa-Zulu Natal, the Eatsern Cape and Limpopo. She asked Letsatsi what is being done about them? 

In response to her question, Letsatsi said: “There are six of them who appeared in court last month and appearing again sometime in December. For you to be able to get that access, you must have a connection within.

They were arrested on the spot. They tried to come into the SASSA office with a list of ID numbers, trying to upload them into the system. We are so happy that we caught them.” 

If there is any confusion as to what you should do or who to contact, please call their toll free number on 0800 60 1011.