South Africa’s biggest digital bank Capitec and SABRIC, the South African Banking Risk Information Centre, recently teamed up as part of #MoneySmaryWeek for a fraud awareness campaign starring Schalk Bezuidenhout. The series used humour to land the message that banks will never ask their clients for their confidential information. It also entrenched the idea that people need to think twice and use caution when purchasing from unknown people and online sites.
The campaign was produced following the industry wide rapid acceleration of fraud related crimes noted by SABRIC since the Covid-19 pandemic began.
In a series of videos, viewers are shown just how easy it is to get caught off guard and unwittingly share confidential info. Actor and comedian Bezuidenhout is seen in a variety of uncomfortable scenarios, where he is duped into sharing information with strangers. From divulging his kiss with his cousin, to being charmed into buying a ‘real’ dolphin and being convinced by a fake boss to perform the hokey pokey, the message is clear – your bank will never pressure you into doing things over the phone such as sharing confidential information. And it’s wise to be wary, especially when buying from an online store or person.
The videos have to date organically reached 263 000 people and had 149 852 engagements, showing the strength of using humour to deliver critical information to consumers.
Matthew Smith, Manager: Content & PR at Capitec Bank says, “Using a relatable medium, we are equipping South Africans to avoid fraud through a simple, engaging campaign. We wanted to deliver something fresh and funny, to cut through the clutter and embed ‘trigger points’, that will make people stop and think when they are in a situation that feels wrong. Fraudsters will often resort to shock tactics that make people panic and act impulsively. Our aim is to equip South Africans to recognise the warning signs of this. Studies have found that humour makes relevant information more memorable, which helps entrench these ‘trigger points’.”
The videos were created in partnership with Bezuidenhout, who brought his unique brand of funny to the table. Matthew says, “We knew Schalk would be perfect. He’s a truly South African persona who many can relate to, with a diverse following. He tweaked the scripts and improvised in the moment, making every video his own. For example, the addition of the purple belly-dancer outfit… We believe that education works best when people are having fun. Schalk creates these moments.”
SABRIC CEO, Nischal Mewalall, says, “We commend Capitec on initiating this series. There are lots of synergies between us, including our shared belief in making consumer financial education accessible and fun. We have seen tangible results from this partnership, including an industrywide drop in fraud crimes, since the campaign commenced. We look forward to continuing our work together.”
Comments showed the relevance of the campaign, with one social media user saying, “On a serious note – well done – this is very much needed as people get scammed all the time”.
Capitec is releasing follow-up consumer education pieces on a monthly basis, and Capitec’s Head of Forensics has also been educating consumers via radio.