• Bullying is a serious issue in schools. We remind about the relevant legislation and definitions in the first of three articles about dealing with school bullies. Read this article in the December 2017 issue of Servamus.

    Bullying is a serious issue in schools. We remind about the relevant legislation and definitions in the first of three articles about dealing with school bullies. Read this article in the December 2017 issue of Servamus.

  • The SAPS is adamant that they want to deal with police members who lead double lives and are susceptible to corrupt activities. All SAPS employees should read this article in the December 2017 issue of Servamus about what it being done to root out corruption.

    The SAPS is adamant that they want to deal with police members who lead double lives and are susceptible to corrupt activities. All SAPS employees should read this article in the December 2017 issue of Servamus about what it being done to root out corruption.

  • Are you a sucker for #FakeNews? We share valuable tips how to distinguish between the good, the bad and the ugly in the December 2017 issue of Servamus.

    Are you a sucker for #FakeNews? We share valuable tips how to distinguish between the good, the bad and the ugly in the December 2017 issue of Servamus.

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- A dangerous online game with one intention: To Kill
By Kotie Geldenhuys

Ben is a 14-year-old teenage boy who comes across the online game the Blue Whale. While playing this game, he has to complete one challenge after another. He accomplishes every task and keeps on moving to the subsequent levels. After 50 days of playing this game, it is time for the final and concluding challenge - the grand finale, which instructs him to commit suicide. He goes up to highest floor of the building and jumps to his death.

The name of this game, "Blue whale", was borrowed from the practice of some types of whales that beach themselves and thereby end their lives (Patchin, 2017). In a similar manner, this online game also focuses on ending the player's life.

But where did it all start? Servamus spoke to Mrs Susan Snyman from the IT faculty of Varsity College in Pretoria, who told us that the origin of the game can be traced back to a 22-year-old Russian psychology student and game designer named Philipp Budeikin, who intentionally manipulated teenagers into committing suicide. He started in 2013 when he created the death group named F57 after he had thought about this idea for five years. Why the name F57? Susan Snyman said that although his name was spelled with a Ph, it was pronounced as an F, and 57 represented the last two digits of his phone number. Philipp established contact with multiple teenagers online, studied their mental state and then selected those he found to be weak or depressed enough to be pushed toward killing themselves. His explanation for his actions is chilling: "There are people and there is biological waste. I was cleaning our society of such people," he said (Makhni, 2017). Susan added that he created the game to cleanse society through suicide of the weak or people who do not represent any value for society and would cause only harm to society.

Philipp Budeikin developed the game in which he gives teenagers tasks to complete up until the point where the teenagers get so vulnerable that they will commit suicide when instructed to do so. Philipp said that he gathered the children, then offered simple tasks which, for some children, were too boring or weird to complete - these were clearly too strong to be manipulated. Those who stayed in the game were given much more extreme tasks like cutting their veins, balancing on a roof top, or killing an animal and posting a video or pictures online to prove it. The majority of children left at that stage. A small group of teenagers was left and they obediently completed all the tasks - it was clear that these teenagers were physiologically ready to follow whatever the administrators told them to do, no matter how strange or scary the tasks were. They felt their position in the group was so precious that they were prepared to literally do anything to stay in. "One of the troubles for us was that 15 children who committed suicide at administrator's orders were told to delete all correspondence in their social media accounts, which they all did. However, one girl went through to the final stage of the game before giving up and she provided state investigators with crucial evidence," said Anton Breido, a senior official from the Russian Investigative Committee (which is like an equivalent to the FBI).

Philipp admitted that he was really pushing teenagers to their death and added: "They were dying happy. I was giving them what they didn't have in real life: warmth, understanding, connections" (Stewart, 2017).

Philipp clearly knew what he had to do to get the results he wanted - this deadly game allegedly resulted in its first suicide in 2015 in Russia (Baruah, 2017). He was later arrested and confessed to provoking 17 deaths and was incarcerated for three years by a Siberian court (Stewart and Davies, 2017). When he walked into prison, he was still in "God" mode and felt that he was untouchable (Stewart, 2017).

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[This is only an extract of an article published in Servamus: December 2017. The rest of the article explains how this deadly game works; the fact that it is a psychological game; the extent of the problem and the possibility of prosecution and we also share a survivor’s story. It is a must read article for all parents and their teenagers to warn them about this deadly game! To enquire how to obtain the rest of this important article, send an e-mail to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone (012) 345 4660.]

Servamus - December 2017

A Free State farmer responded to an OLX advert from someone selling animal feed. "I wanted to buy cattle feed, so I deposited the R21 000 immediately after I verified the seller's banking details," he said.
By Kotie Geldenhuys
During mid-October 2017, social media was awash with the news that approximately 30 million South Africans' personal information had been hacked.
By Annalise Kempen
There is no positive light in which to paint the latest crime statistics released by the Minister of Police, Fikile Mbalula, on 24 October 2017.
By Annalise Kempen
Ben is a 14-year-old teenage boy who comes across the online game the Blue Whale. While playing this game, he has to complete one challenge after another.
By Kotie Geldenhuys

Pollex - December 2017

Years ago, when General Motors “was still a sergeant”, the police’s motto was “Servamus et Servimus”, meaning “we protect and we serve”.
Read More - S V Phillips 2017 (1) SACR 373 (SCA)
Background Section 4(1) of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act 12 of 2004 (hereinafter referred to as Act 12 of 2004) provides as follows:
Read More - S V Setlholo 2017 (1) SACR 544 (NCK)
In this case the accused was, at the time of committing the two offences concerned, a constable in the SAPS.

Letters - December 2017

While participating in the SAPS National Half-marathon held in Rustenburg during October 2017, I decided that I wanted to run all the marathon races in the Bay during 2018.
On Wednesday 1 November 2017, at approximately 10:00, Capt B R Simpson and Const T E Ntuli from the FLASH Unit at SAPS Emanguzi were travelling along the R22 main road (Engozeni area) towards the Farazela Port of Entry at the Mozambican border.
South African communities are faced with various crimes and it has been a challenge to every citizen to play a role in bringing all perpetrators to justice by working hand-in-hand with the South African Police Service.
Members of the social crime prevention office of Emanguzi SAPS have been working hard to bring awareness to the local communities in an effort to protect the most vulnerable and youngest members in our communities.
December 2017 Magazine Cover

Servamus' Mission

Servamus is a community-based safety and security magazine for both members of the community as well as safety and security practitioners with the aim of increasing knowledge and sharing information, dedicated to improving their expertise, professionalism and service delivery standards. It promotes sound crime management practices, freedom of speech, education, training, information sharing and a networking platform.