Police warn of ‘forceful and insistent’ phone scam targeting Aussies

Unsuspecting Aussies are being tricked out of large amounts of money by the scammers.

Police have warned of “forceful and insistent” phone scammers that are conning unsuspecting Aussies out of “large amounts of money”, in the latest worrying trend.

Victims of the cruel scam have revealed they were called by someone posing as a cash-savvy investment company, asking for access to their savings and promising to use their money to generate significant wealth.

Victoria Police warned that the scammers were “forceful and insistent” over the phone, posing a particular threat to more vulnerable, unsuspecting people.

At this stage, authorities know of at least two victims who have been swindled out of “large amounts of money”, and worry it could spread.

Read more: Aussies ‘losing thousands’ to fake Facebook lottery scam

“The victims received a phone call from a person claiming to be from an investment company called ‘FTO Capital’, claiming to be able to use the victim’s money to create significant wealth for them,” Victoria Police said in a statement.

“The manner of the person calling is described as forceful and insistent when the victim is asked to transfer large sums of money.

“Police believe the scammers may be operating from an overseas location and are warning consumers to be vigilant.”

It’s just the latest in a long line of elaborate scams recently. Just within the last few weeks, an email posing as a Telstra bill was being sent round, designed to trick people into clicking on malicious links.

Meanwhile, Wangiri missed-call phone scams are also becoming a major problem for people all across Australia.

Read more: The wangiri missed-call phone scam targeting hundreds of Australians

With hundreds of Australians falling victim to the clever scam each month, authorities are warning the public to be vigilant when it comes to returning calls from numbers you don’t know.

Speaking on Seven News in Brisbane recently, ACCC representative Delia Rickard said the scam was particularly worrying.

“They dial you, they let the phone ring once and they hang up,” she explained.

The fraudulent calls are made from all around the world and usually from an overseas number. The numbers are unusually long and originate from an array of exotic countries including Papua New Guinea, Madagascar, Mozambique and Ascension Island, just to name a few. While nothing can happen if you don’t return the call, you could be hit with a large fee if you return the call.

Whenever anyone rings back the number, they’re typically hit with a premium fee. The scammer usually keeps a large chunk of the money they gain by ripping you off in the first place. 

Rickard said the scammers make more money by keeping you on the phone for as long as possible.

Have you fallen victim to a scam like this?

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