The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) today announced that five members were convicted and fined a total of RM8,500 by the courts during the fourth quarter of 2014 (October – December 2014) for fraudulent withdrawal related cases.
The five were charged and convicted under Section 59 of the EPF Act 1991 and the fines imposed on each offender ranged between RM1,200 and RM2,000. Out of the five cases, four had been charged for attempting to withdraw their savings in a fraudulent manner. Under the Act, members face a jail term not exceeding three (3) years or fine not more than RM10,000, or both. They will also be ordered to repay the entire amount illegally withdrawn.
In a statement today, EPF Deputy Chief Executive Officer (Operations) Dato’ Mohd Naim Daruwish said, “Fraudulent withdrawal is a serious offence and members convicted of the offence face heavy penalty and they no longer be eligible to withdraw their EPF money for the particular scheme.
During the same quarter, a total of 16 new cases had been filed against members for fraudulent withdrawals.
The EPF does not deny the involvement of agents or syndicates who offer their services for a fee to members, particularly those who are desperate for cash. Members are urged not to fall victim to such syndicates, which usually promote their services via websites and through the distribution of business cards and flyers.
“We urge members not to seek the services of third parties or agents and go directly to the EPF if they wish to make any EPF withdrawals as it is much faster and more convenient,” said Dato’ Mohd Naim, adding that the EPF does not appoint any agents or middlemen to help members withdraw money from their EPF savings.
He added that while the EPF allowed members to make withdrawals, they were advised to withdraw their EPF savings only if it was necessary as the objective of EPF savings was for members’ retirement.
The EPF has a comprehensive system that allows it to identify and detect fraudulent withdrawal cases; even after the money have already been withdrawn and stern action will be taken against the offenders.
Members who encounter any instances of fraud or attempt to commit fraud relating to EPF withdrawals are urged to report it to the EPF Anti-Fraud Hotline at 03-2616 2121during working hours from Monday to Friday.
About the Employees Provident Fund (EPF)
The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) is Malaysia’s premier retirement savings fund to help its members achieve adequate savings for a comfortable retirement. This is in line with EPF’s vision to help members achieve a better future and the mission to safeguard members’ savings and deliver excellent services. The EPF has evolved significantly from transaction-centric to a professional fund management organisation with a strong focus on retirement security. The EPF is guided by a robust and professional governance framework when making investment decisions. It continues to play a catalytic role in the nation’s economic growth and seeks to cultivate a savings and investment culture among its members to improve the country’s financial literacy level.