PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
Ruth Cummings Gombe
 
Comments: 8
Article views: 2856
 
 
Latest Badges:

 
View all Ruth Cummings Gombe's badges.
 

It Happened To Me Too!

07 December 2012, 08:43

I am one of those people who is always alert and aware of potential scams and scammers.  I have heard how some operate, the tricks they use, lies they tell and even how they charm their way into their victims pockets, homes, lives, bank accounts, etc.

Earlier this week, I had a visit at my office from a couple that has been here before, and they caught me on a rare off-guard moment.  I was busy preparing for training the next day, had so many things to get through and was working from Reception to save me from having to run from my office to reception, for the printer, phone, etc.  They enquired about our workshops, but the striking thing about this couple is that they reeked of alcohol, as they did on the other two visits earlier in the year.  The guy was rather persistant in wanting to see the training room his wifew would be trained in, which I refused to do as I did not like his manner.  His wife was quiet, hardly speaking and seemed rather shy.  I was rather irritated with his manner but remained polite, so I gave them the information they needed and hinted at them leaving.  He wanted to book his wife for a course on Monday next, but since I did not have a class in the subject she wanted, I asked them to leave her contact details and I would call them with a date.

They produced a business card with a name, company and landline number handwritten on the back.  I knew it was not her real name or number, but the guy insisted that she would be at that number the next day.  I humoured him and wrote it down, and he then asked her to give me her cell number, which she did but seemed a bit confused about the number.  Again, I wrote it down to humour them, had a funny feeling about them but was happy to see them leave.

As they reached the door, they spoke in a language I could not identify (not one of our local languages), then turned and asked me for water.  That's the point I should have known they were up to no good, but I was highly irritated and was not thinking straight.  I got them water while they stood in the doorway to the kitchen where I could see them, and he was talking constantly and loudly.  He asked for another glass, forced his 'wife' to drink it, and still asked for a third glass of water which he drank.  Then they left in a rush, mumbling about their car being parked illegally on the road as it was giving them problems so they could not park in the yard.

It was only a couple of hours later that I noticed that my backpack was missing.  I searched high and low but it was nowhere to be found, and then it hit me that I had been robbed!  Fortunately I still had my cellphone and car keys and my backpack mainly had training materials, personal effects such as perfume, lip gloss, etc.  My main irritation was in the fact that my credit cards, ID, drivers license and other such cards were in that bag, and I was not looking forward to having to cancel cards and apply for new documents.

I was fortunate in that it could have been far, far worse but it was not.  I pieced the puzzle together and realised that on their previous visits, they pretended to enquire but were assessing the office, security and looking for something to steal.  Previously there were no handbags or other items visible, but this time they found something, albeit really not worth too much.  I called the number they had given me as I suspected that they were targeting whatever company that was too.  I was right, they had applied the same modus operandi there but had promised to come back later.  The other thing that struck me is that this company whose number they were using is miles away from my office, out in the far East Rand!  They are getting around and targeting offices far and wide, so I would encourage you to please be on the lookout for them.

They do not just operate as a couple, on their other visit they were with another lady, and it would appear that while they distracted me with the water, their accomplice came in and nipped my backpack.  The lady at the other company also said they had another guy who stayed in the car and he was the driver on that day.  They were clearly targeting the other company too, but since I alerted them, the scammer scum will not be getting away with anything from there.

Now I know that many would be quick to say "How could you have been so dumb?" and while I tend to agree with you, I must also warn you that these types of scammers and thieves will only hit you when they can see you are not on full alert.  They look for that opportunity, that moment when you are otherwise occupied or when you have let your guard down.  And if they can't get that opportunity, they work their magic to earn your trust and get you to let your guard down. 

So as we go on holiday, please always keep your guard up, just be on the lookout at all times for all kinds of criminals.  They have spent most of the year planning on how to relieve you of your earnings, property, etc and believe me, they have scripted their routines so that you will not suspect them.  There are so many scams out there that it is difficult to keep up with each one, but just do your best to be vigilant all the time.  Sometimes the scammer scum also use violence to get what they want, so please be safe.

Most of all, I wish you all happy, safe holidays! :-)

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.
 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
8 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
CandK
The pearls of an Atheist Easter

I have an extended family that are Christian, and we are not talking the love they neighbour, forgive your mates and do the right thing, of the good old bishop Tutu kind. Read more...

61 comments 522 views
Submitted by
Makate Rapulana
The colour of corruption

The word "corruption" is without doubt the most (ab)used and politicised word in South Africa.  Read more...

18 comments 291 views
Submitted by
Makate Rapulana
Who is watching the watchdog?

The late chief justice Pius Langa once averred: “I think judges should have a thick skin. We work in public, we give our judgments in public, and we give reasons for those judgments." Read more...

3 comments 102 views
Submitted by
Narian Chengiah Naidoo
A Civilized Society

Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. said, "Taxes are what we pay for a civilized society." Those words carry value and meaning only if "civilized" is understood as being good, happy and beneficial to all citizens. Read more...

7 comments 519 views
Submitted by
Rodney Bevan
SA under Zuma

Jacob Zuma, along with a handful of cronies has single handedly almost destroyed the country, its people and its economy. Read more...

37 comments 2835 views
Submitted by
The Fox 5366
Illegal Miners: Voiceless Prostit...

There's been a lot said about legalising prostitution so that prostitutes can be protected, receive healthcare and not be victimised. Read more...

11 comments 656 views

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

 

services

E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

Calais Website keywords automated by OpenCalais.

 
Digital Media & Marketing Association
 
© 2014 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.