The South African Reserve Bank (SARB) on Tuesday warned members of the public that it had not recalled any coins or banknotes as a precautionary measure following the Covid-19 outbreak, calling these claims fake news.
The reserve bank said under no circumstances would they send employees to collect money from the public, stating that this was a plot from criminals to scam people out of their money.
“The SARB has neither withdrawn any banknotes or coins, nor issued any instruction to hand in banknotes or coins that may be contaminated with the Covid-19 virus,” it said.
“If members of the public are approached by individuals purporting to be SARB employees or representatives to hand in their cash, they should refuse and contact local police.”
As part of the scam, criminals are approaching the homes of unsuspecting victims pretending to be SARB employees or representatives and then demanding that they hand over their money as it could be contaminated with the virus.
However, according to SARB, there is zero evidence to back-up these claims.
“There is currently no evidence that the virus is transmitted through the use of banknotes and coins. The SARB continues to encourage members of the public to follow basic hygiene practice and clean their hands often,” it said.
Members of the public are encouraged to contact their local police services in the case of a suspected fraudster. – Bjorn Vorster