Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) on Monday warned the public of imposters targeting Giyani communities in Limpopo by pretending to be fieldworkers.
The imposters are “going door-to-door claiming to be profiling households”, Stats SA warns. They also ask members of the public to provide their banking details and confirm whether they are using mobile banking apps.
Stats SA scam
Statistician-General of South Africa Risenga Maluleka warns: “Criminals are taking advantage of Stats SA’s name to get information from citizens to rob them”.
In some cases, Giyani residents have been robbed of money as well. Stats SA reminded the public that employees would not ask for banking details or information pertaining to banking habits.
In addition, Stats SA fieldworkers will wear branded bibs, as well as Stats SA ID cards and introduction letters. Members who have reason to believe imposters are profiling households in their communities can contact 0800-110-248.
Risk assessment in process
Due to Covid-19 protocols, Stats SA field workers do not go door-to-door and will be using alternative interviewing modes instead, such as computer-assisted telephone interviewing (CATI) and web interviewing (CAWI).
While Stats will continue to collect information to provide much-needed economic and social statistics, this will not be done through “face-to-face-data collection”, the agency said.
“We are currently conducting a risk assessment to determine when we can resume face-to-face data collection. The public will be informed once this decision has been finalised”.
How to report
These incidents can also be reported to the nearest Stats SA provincial or district office, and the legitimacy of fieldworkers can be verified on the agency’s official website by following this link.
“Members of the public are urged to be vigilant and not fall victim to the scam. The organisation has communicated its temporary suspension of all face-to-face data collection due to the latest Covid-19 restrictions”.
In other news, the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) warned of scams and fake news posts on social media pertaining to the application process for the R350 grant and food parcel vouchers.
Sassa also warned citizens to be vigilant of fake news posts about the SRD urging the public to apply for the grant via WhatsApp, USSD, e-mail or by calling a call centre.