The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) has strongly warned beneficiaries of suspected fraudsters on a mission to swindle beneficiaries. The warning comes after the agency received several calls from beneficiaries reporting people visiting their villages claiming to have been assigned by Sassa to make electronic transactions as part of their grant payments.Paseka Letsatsi, Sassa spokesperson, said suspected fraudsters intrigue beneficiaries to make electronic transactions as part of grant payments. “These imposters allegedly ask beneficiaries to swipe their cards as many as three times in some cases to maximize bank charges. Beneficiaries should note that cash payments are done through the South African Post Office (SAPO) and they should ignore anybody posing as Sassa who offers to pay,” said Letsatsi. Payments via the post office started on Monday (08/10). This came after the Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) made the final payments this September following expiry of its contract. The process also followed ruling by the Constitutional Court after discovery of discrepancies in the agreement between Sassa and the CPS.“Cash payments will henceforth start on the 8th of every month and will be done by the post office. In the past, electronic payments done through the post office, ATM’s and merchants were done from the 1st of every month. All electronic payments will start a day before the first of the month going forward,” said Letsatsi.Beneficiaries are advised to avoid requesting receipts when doing balance enquires at ATM’s and should rather view their balances on the ATM screen to avoid unnecessary bank charges. They are further reminded to also keep their PIN numbers secret and not disclose them to anyone including Sassa officials. Letsatsi has advised beneficiaries that Sassa only endorse Sassa cards, gold in colour with a Sassa and government emblem at the top on either side. “Any other card without these features is not a Sassa card. “Sassa does not endorse any financial institution or their cards,” he said. If a beneficiary wants to receive a grant through a card other than the Sassa card, they have to provide Sassa with a request for a bank payment form. This form is available at banks, Sassa offices and on www.sassa.gov.za.