Dell blacklists looted computers, investigates vandalism
Dell Technologies South Africa says it has blacklisted all of its computing products stolen during last month’s wave of violence and looting, and warns customers against buying tech products on the black market.
A month ago, SA descended into chaos, with what started as protests for the release of incarcerated former president Jacob Zuma, later turning into violent demonstrations in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) and Gauteng.
The unrest resulted in over 40 000 South African businesses being looted, burnt or vandalised, with hundreds of shopping centres and warehouses ransacked in the two provinces.
Dell, which develops, sells, repairs and supports computers and related products, was among the companies whose warehouses were targeted during the looting spree.
“All stolen items have been blacklisted and will not be eligible to receive any support or services from Dell,” saysDoug Woolley, MD of Dell Technologies South Africa.
“We remain committed to tackling the issue of crime in South Africa and we’re working closely with law enforcement authorities to identify and bring to book all perpetrators and those who are found to be in possession of these stolen products.
“Furthermore, we aim to protect our customers from purchasing fraudulent or stolen products that have been obtained illegally. We would like to remind customers to be vigilant when purchasing Dell products and ensure these are being bought at authorised Dell Technologies distribution and retail outlets,” adds Woolley.
ICT distributor Mustek, LG Electronics and Samsung were among tech firms whose offices and warehouses were also looted.
South Africa’s three mobile operators were also left reeling after looters targeted their outlets at shopping malls across Gauteng and KZN.
While insurance companies will not directly pay out for ICT infrastructure destroyed during the unrest, they told ITWeb, at the time, that they were liaising with the South African Special Risks Insurance Association regarding insured tech-related claims.