A new weapon in the fight against scammers 29



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The year is only seven months old but already hard-working Australians have been fleeced of $45 million by low-life scammers. This accompanying 45,000 complaints about scams to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission means that it’s a problem that is not going away.

“Scammers are becoming increasingly sophisticated in their attempts to get your money or personal details. Scams succeed because they look like the real thing and catch you off guard when you’re not expecting it,” ACCC acting chairwoman Delia Rickard said.

To help combat the growth in scams, and the sophisticated, persuasive methods, the ACCC has today launched a new version of it Scamwatch website.

“Our new website, which is being launched today has all the latest news and tips to help you identify and avoid scams. By following the advice on this site, you can help to protect yourself against scammers”.

“For the first time, the ACCC has published data on common scams that are causing the most harm in Australia, which will be updated every month on Scamwatch.

This tool will help you keep one step ahead of the scammers”.

We reported last week of a new phone scam based on taxation returns,

Ms Rickard mad a point of saying that everyone needs to be on guard for scammers.

“Scams target people of all backgrounds, ages and income levels across Australia. There’s no one group of people who are more likely to become a victim of a scam and all of us may be vulnerable to a scam at some time.”

If you do feel that you’ve been targeted, contact Scamwatch either through its website, or by phone on 1300 302 502 from 8.30 am to 8.00 pm, Monday to Friday. The new website also has safety guidelines, and case studies of real people who have lost money, or had their personal identity hijacked.

Have you ever been targeted by a scammer? What advice you like to pass along to the community? Let us know in the Comments section below.



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  1. I amazes me that people still allow themselves to be conned in to these get rich quick schemes. There is so much on the TV and in the papers to let people know about these things and yet still they get caught. I don’t answer anything on here, nor do I speak to people on the phone. I am rude if they push, I usually hang up if they don’t speak withing 10 seconds.

    2 REPLY
    • I have a bit of fun with them first if I’m in the mood. I work on the principal of don’t trust anyone unless you can verify who they are or where they are from and certainly NOT over the phone. I don’t open emails that I either don’t know the sender or am not expecting either. I’ve started to enter competitions on occasions only to delete the whole thing when they started wanting too much information. It’s just not worth it. I too can’t understand how people can still be conned with so much publicity about scams.

  2. I heard stories of scammers cold calling people telling them they’ve won a prize/lottery. In order for you to receive the prize money, they will ask you for money (sometimes a large sum) as an upfront payment in order to process the transfer. Hang up straight away if this happens.

  3. When caller ring re money donations or such I advise then I require there billing address a company order number and that I charge $200.00 per hr or part there of for the first hr there is usually stunned silence then a hang up my son hand the phone to his 4year old daughter and she talks to them about nothing it is hilarious. But don’t answer or give anything over the phone.

  4. Alleged F’book editor advised by messenger I had won $470k US and it would be deposited into my account as soon as I paid a Bank of America fee of $640:00

  5. Don’t take part in ANY transaction you have not personally initiated. Quite simple really.

  6. Do not give personal details to anyone. I always tell them I will send a cheque. They normally give up on you if you say that because cheques can be cancelled.

  7. I frequently receive dodgy e-mails advising me I am entitles to extraordinary amounts of money; usually poorly written and quite obviously a con but one supposedly from PayPal was much more sophisticated. It wanted me to verify a purchase I had not made then, in order to dispute it, I was directed to a page that wanted all my personal details, even including my middle name and place of birth; an obvious attempt at identity theft. I notified PayPal and Scamwatch. I received another a week or so later: they’re out there and they are persistent.

  8. I recently received an email for iTunes, thanking me for my purchase of…. $18.95,and advising me if had not purchased this item to click on the attached site. As I hadn’t purchased anything I clicked on, to be asked for all my banking details, plus mothers maiden name. I deleted and advised my bank. Obviously a scam.
    Another email was from taxation dept informing me they owed me $800 odd dollars. Knew they owed me nothing. Rang the taxation dept, yes a scam, forwarded the email to them and then deleted.

  9. The best way to stop scammers from calling is to change your phone number to a silent one. No one calls. It costs an extra couple of dollars each bill, but it’s entirely worth it.

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