Sassa Introduces New Requirement For SRD Grant Payments

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Millions of vulnerable people living in South Africa are currently benefitting from the Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grant. The agency responsible for paying the grant will be required to under a new verification check to ensure they keep receiving their SRD Grant payments. 


The South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) has announced that some Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grant beneficiaries will be required to undergo biometric identity verification. This forms part of the effort to ensure the relief of distress grant is paid to individuals who meet the eligibility criteria for the SRD grant

The SRD grant was introduced to provide some financial assistance to unemployed people living in South Africa. Around 7 million people are currently benefiting from the SRD grant. 

Sassa revealed that some beneficiaries of the grant will be required to complete Biometric Identity Verification. This is being done by Sassa to detect and stop dishonest people from wrongly benefitting from the grant. 

What Is Biometric Identity Verification For The SRD Grant?

Biometric Identity Verification is done to confirm who you are based on your unique physical traits. This could be done by using a person's fingerprints, face or voice.

Verification occurs when your biometric data is collected and compared to a record of your biometric traits. 

What Will Sassa Use For Biometric Identity Verification? 

Sassa will use facial recognition to verify the identity of SRD grant beneficiaries. Beneficiaries may need to have a working camera on their mobile phone to complete the facial recognition process. 

Which SRD Grant Beneficiaries Will Be Required To Complete Facial Recognition? 

The biometric identity verification process will be mandatory for certain individuals.

Firstly, it applies to clients who received a referred SRD status. This is to ensure their identities are accurately verified.

Additionally, SRD beneficiaries who want to update their mobile numbers will also need to undergo the biometric verification process. 

The biometric identity verification requirement extends to SRD grant beneficiaries who have selected the Postbank account option to be opened on their behalf. By undergoing the biometric verification process, their identities can be confirmed, safeguarding against potential fraudulent activities. 

Clients requesting to be paid through the cash-send method will also need to undergo the same verification process to ensure the secure and legitimate transfer of funds.

Clients who require any of these services listed below will be required to undergo identity verification through facial recognition 

Biometric Identity Verification helps to maintain the security and accuracy of a grant beneficiary's personal information.

What Is A Referred SRD Grant Status?  

A referred SRD grant status is given when your application was randomly selected for internal verification and quality assurance. It may also indicate that the cell phone number used for the SRD grant application was flagged by the South African Fraud Prevention Services (SAFPS). 

SRD grant applicants with a referred SRD grant status must contact the SAFPS to clear this issue and can't submit an SRD grant appeal. Once the issue has been cleared, SRD grant applicants must send an email to Sassa with proof they have cleared the challenge.

Beneficiaries will then undergo the facial recognition process. 

Why Do SRD Grant Beneficiaries Change Their Mobile Number 

To apply for the SRD grant, applicants must have a valid mobile number. If the mobile number captured on the SRD grant application website is not valid, the grant beneficiary will not receive messages from Sassa informing them that their SRD grant is available for collection. 

Several circumstances can lead to an SRD grant beneficiary changing their mobile phone number. SRD grant beneficiaries must update their mobile phone number on the SRD grant website to prevent issues with their grant payments. 

More Information On Sassa’s Biometric Identity Verification 

SRD grant beneficiaries that are required to complete the biometric identity verification will receive two SMSs from Sassa. The second SMS from Sassa will contain a link that beneficiaries must click on to start the biometric identity verification process. 

It's important to note that the link will only be valid for around 72 hours or 3 days. Failure to click on the link while it is valid could result in the grant beneficiaries needing to restart the identity verification process. 

Beneficiaries who require further information about the new biometric identity verification are advised to contact the Sassa call centre on 0800 60 10 11 to request the SMS to be re-sent.

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