CEO'S home loan plundered

The recent spike in SIM-swop scams is worrying, says the SA Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric).

Media24 chief executive Esmare Weideman became the latest victim of a fraudulent SIM swop at the weekend, with R1.5 million being transferred from her home loan account to a linked cheque account. The fraudster then allegedly made three transfers totalling R360 000 to an account in the name of "Badiba Madiba".

"The first transfer was of R200 000, then R80 000 and then another R80 000," Weideman, who banks with Absa, said yesterday.

"I feel so exposed. I looked at my phone at around lunchtime on Sunday and saw that there was no network... On Monday, I asked my personal assistant to get my phone going and after several calls to MTN, they told my personal assistant that someone had done a SIM swop."

Weideman said MTN had her phone reactivated and at about 2.30pm on Monday, she received a call from a member of Absa's digital fraud division who informed her that her account had been frozen because of "suspected fraudulent activity".

"That's when they told me that R1.5m had been transferred from my home loan to my cheque account and that three further transfers were made to another account," she said.

Weideman reported the incident to the Rondebosch police on Monday.

"Absa confirmed that its fraud unit was investigating, but I'm concerned about their non-commital approach when it comes to the recovery of the money."

Weideman said her private banker had told her that "normally" the account holder was responsible for any transactions on the account.

"My PA has been fielding calls all day from people who have been defrauded in the same way, and who are waiting to get their money back," she said. "Syndicates are targeting all banks. They need to improve their security mechanisms."

Sabric chief executive Kalyani Pillay said she was worried about the "scale of crimes" committed against bank clients across the country.

"The banks are investing significantly in systems and solutions to monitor and detect such risks."

MTN and Absa were involved in at least three cases of SIM card-related fraud reported by Moneyweb recently.

MTN could not be reached for comment yesterday.

(Cape Argus)

  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
Characters remaining

    Latest Property News
    • 22 Jun 2018
      The rental market in many Johannesburg suburbs has shown encouraging signs of revival this year but it remains a competitive market and landlords who best cater to their market’s needs will reap the healthiest returns.
    • 22 Jun 2018
      Home design is constantly evolving to reflect the changing needs of society. We look at some of the ways in which our use of space is changing.
    • 22 Jun 2018
      While estate agents can help the seller with correctly pricing the property and marketing a property to the right pool of potential buyers, at the end of the day it’s the impression that the property will make on buyers that counts the most.
    • 21 Jun 2018
      Anyone who’s ever been involved in a building project that’s gone wrong will appreciate the importance of adequate insurance cover in the construction industry.
    • 21 Jun 2018
      A recent news story about a blind tenant caught in a legal battle with his body corporate over letters and notices he was unable to read and consequently comply with has raised the question: what are the legal obligations for landlords with disabled tenants?
    • 21 Jun 2018
      A trend that’s taken the world by storm in recent years is that of hygge (pronounced: hue-guh), a Danish concept that is about creating intimacy, connecting with loved ones and taking pleasure in small, ordinary things.
    • 20 Jun 2018
      Buying or selling real estate isn’t as easy as it is portrayed sometimes, especially if there is a death of a party during the transaction which can make it awkward, tricky and inconvenient.
    • 20 Jun 2018
      With interest rates remaining at historic lows and banks continuing to compete for mortgage finance business, first-time buyers with funds at their disposal are currently well-placed to gain that initial foothold on the property ladder, particularly in the light of the slightly lower growth rates currently experienced in residential property values.
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    Share this Page

    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    Connect with us