The Ministry of Finance yesterday warned the public to be more vigilant of a fake Facebook account that is up and running and attempting to scam unsuspecting individuals. According to ministry spokesperson, Tonateni Shidhudhu, the Ministry of Finance is aware that a Facebook account and an email address under the name “Iipumbu Shiimi” and Iipumbushiimi@gmail.com have been created and are being used to spread fake news and solicit information from the public.
“The ministry wishes to inform the public that such page and email address purporting to be the personal or official account of, or bearing photos or personal information of the Minister of Finance, Iipumbu Shiimi, are fake and unauthorised,” warned Shidhudhu. He added that the hoax account has been used to communicate to people regarding a funding opportunity for businesses and farming establishments allegedly supported by the International Development Association (IDA). Shidhudhu noted that no legal action has yet been taken against the perpetrator(s).
The fake account states that the fictitious programme aims to support African citizens in small businesses or farming development. “If you are interested send your full name, email address, phone number, ID number, to my email at Iipumbushiimi@mail.com and I will add your name to my beneficiary list so you obtain the form and apply for the grants,” the scammer wrote on social media.
“The imposter has been requesting people to submit their personal details to be added on their beneficiary list. The ministry would like to inform the public that the said account is fake and such programme or grant does not exist,” Shidhudhu indicated.
The public has been advised to disregard any requests or communication from such pages and emails and especially refrain from sharing any personal information with said accounts. Shidhudhu further noted that all communications from the minister is shared by the public relations office and on the ministry’s official Facebook and Twitter pages.
“Please keep vigilance, as fraudsters have many ways of phishing information which are to their benefits,” Shidhudhu warned.