AmaBhungane’s investigative journalist, Dewald van Rensburg explains the R90m social grant system hack that happened at Postbank on Newsroom Afrika. Read the full article:R90m hack at Postbank kept under wraps On the 30th of March, amaBhungane published a story on how unknown individuals, most likely working from inside the aspiring state-owned Postbank, stole millions through the social grant system between 16 and 28 October last year. The brazen fraud involved illicitly crediting grant beneficiary accounts with large sums and then emptying these accounts out at ATMs. Postbank confirmed the theft but stressed that the money was not stolen from customers but rather from Postbank itself. “Postbank wishes not to provide too much information about the modus operandi of the cybercrime fraud incident in order to protect the sensitive processes of the investigation that is currently underway,” Postbank acting chief executive Kevin Maartens said in response to questions. The scheme was only accidentally discovered and quashed when a call-centre operator noticed a SASSA grant beneficiary account with a balance of just under R100 000 — highly anomalous for a grant recipient.
Before joining the amaBhungane team in 2017, Micah was the national coordinator for media freedom and diversity at the Right2Know Campaign. He holds a Masters in African Studies from Oxford University and a BA Honours in History from Wits University.