Sars warns SA of new e-mail scam

12 February 2013

Taxpayers should be wary of an e-mail scam using the South African Revenue Service (Sars) logo to defraud people, an official warned on Monday.

“Members of the public are randomly emailed with false spoofed e-mails made to look as if these e-mails were sent from Sars, but are in fact fraudulent e-mails aimed at enticing unsuspecting taxpayers to part with personal information, such as bank account details,” Sars spokeswoman Marika Muller said.

Muller said in a statement that some of the e-mails, which were sent in January, were from returns@sars.co.za or refunds@sars.co.za, indicating that taxpayers were eligible to receive tax refunds.

The subject of some of the e-mails was “Your payment from SARS” and the wording was “Dear Taxpayer, accept your refund here from the Refund Section”.

Others had a link which read: “You have an important message from Sars eFiling”.

“People have contacted us to check with us if these e-mails were genuine or not,” Muller said.

The e-mails contained links to false forms and false websites intended for people to enter their personal information, such as bank account details.

She advised taxpayers not to open e-mails from unknown sources.

“Sars will not request your banking details over the phone, or via e-mail or websites.”

Sapa