Pretoria, 16 February, 2017 – The South African Revenue Service (SARS) would like to warn job seekers to be vigilant of exploitation through fraudulent employment offers.
SARS has noted a SARS-branded e-mail that is being circulated which confirms acceptance of the recipient into a bogus “SARS Learnership Programme”. The prospective applicant is then instructed to make a deposit of an ‘administrative fee’ into a Shoprite Money Market Service account for the application to be processed.
The e-mail scam is an adaptation of another scam whereby individuals posing as SARS staff notify people that they have been successfully employed by SARS and are required to buy uniforms and identity cards which are SARS-branded and appear authentic.
Members of the public are reminded that SARS will never ask that a payment be made into any other account. SARS does not endorse commercial venues.
Members of the public are also urged not respond to e-mails from unknown sources. Any correspondence can be verified by contacting the SARS contact centre or the nearest SARS branch.
Members of the public are urged to report these illegal scams to the police to avoid further exploitation of the vulnerable.
How to avoid falling victim to a scam
Members of the public are warned to keep the following tips in mind:
- Verify any correspondence or personal identification cards by contacting the SARS contact centre or your nearest branch.
- SARS officials are legally required to present a SARS identity card when interacting with taxpayers. Specific information on these cards can first be verified with the SARS contact centre or at a SARS branch.
- Do not make any immediate commitments or provide any personal information including banking details except through direct contact with SARS Contact Centre or branch visit.
- SARS does not endorse commercial ventures, programmes, schemes and offers. The legitimacy of payment channels can be verified via the SARS contact centre or on the SARS website.
- The location and listing of all SARS offices and branches can be found on the SARS website.
How SARS communicates with taxpayers and members of the public
- SARS will never request for your banking details in any communication that you receive via post, email, or SMS.
- For the purpose of telephonic engagement and authentication when you contact the SARS contact centre, SARS will verify your personal details and identity.
- Taxpayers are reminded not to open or respond to emails from unknown sources. Be aware of emails that request your personal, tax, banking and eFiling details (login credentials, passwords, pins, credit/debit card information, etc.)
- SARS will never send you hyperlinks to other websites, even those of banks.
- Taxpayers who are concerned about emails or SMS messages claiming to be from SARS should: