Zinhle in SMS scammers cross hairs

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A VICTIM of an SMS scam believes the workers at the municipality are part of the crime.

Zinhle Gumede (24) of Mariannhill, KZN told Daily Sun she was scammed out of R1 500 by a man claiming he was from eThekwini Municipality.

“I usually apply online for secretarial jobs advertised by the municipality on eCareers. There is no way that an outsider would get access to that information,” she said.

One of the SMSes received by Zinhle Gumede
One of the SMSes received by Zinhle Gumede

Zinhle, who works for a cellular company, contacted Daily Sun after she saw the municipality’s warning in the paper about a scam targeting people who had applied for the municipality’s artisan learnership development programme. Zinhle said she received an SMS on 30 May saying her application was being processed.

She then received another SMS on 1 June telling her to come for an interview on 3 June. Then she got a call from a man who said he was Sipho from the municipality. He told her she had to pay R2 500 in advance.

“He said it was standard procedure,” said Zinhle.

She said she had only R1 500 and he said that was in order and gave her an account number to deposit the money. When she went for an interview a worker told her there was no interview scheduled for her.

“Sipho did not answer his phone. I did my own investigation and it led me to a municipal worker’s house in KwaNdengezi. I took a photo of the house and sent it to him.

“He replied via SMS and threatened to deal with me if I continued bothering him,” she said.

After Daily Sun sent an inquiry to the municipality on Monday with Zinhle’s contact details, the municipality called her. Zinhle said the municipality was investigating the matter.

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