Let’s Talk Scams
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has seen an increasing number of highly sophisticated and convincing scams, with Australians reporting losses of $211 million over the past year according to Scamwatch data. This represents an 89% increase compared to the same period last year. We don’t want this to happen to you, so we’ve provided this useful information to help you stay safe online.
What to watch out for
Scams can be hard to recognise, but common warning signs in email and SMS scams can include:
- Spelling and grammatical errors.
- Unusual links or unfamiliar email addresses.
- Requests to urgently verify your accounts, make a payment or claim a prize.
There are many ways scammers can try to access your details via phone, email, mail and SMS and knowing what to look out for can help
you protect yourself and your loved ones from common threats. Here are just a few:
Email and SMS scams - known as ‘phishing’, these often look like a genuine email or SMS from a legitimate source but can contain links or attachments leading to malicious software or fake websites.
Remote access scams - scammers can try to access your devices and often use fake but credible reasons such as needing to update your device settings or improve your internet or NBN connection. They can then use this access to steal your personal information.
Mail delivery scams- this scam tries to get access to your card details by sending seemingly legitimate emails and SMS messages claiming to be from postal delivery services.
Job and investment scams - victims can be lured into scams or even illegal activity by the offer of big rewards from enticing investments or job opportunities.
Keeping your details safe
It’s critical to talk openly about what scams look like and how to avoid them. We’ve put together some of our key do’s and don’ts when it comes to scams to help you protect yourself.
|Delete emails or SMS messages from illegitimate sources.||Give out personal information to unknown third parties or allow them to access your devices, even if they claim to be from legitimate sources.|
|Contact your service providers directly via the details listed on their official website if you’ve received suspicious or unusual material from them.||Click on suspicious pop-ups on websites or links and attachments in emails and SMS messages from unverified senders.|
|Use strong, secure passwords and multi-factor authentications, such as requiring SMS confirmations when entering passwords.|
It’s important to stay alert when it comes to protecting your personal information. Change your passwords regularly and don’t share your online banking details or one-time SMS verification codes with anyone else.
For more information on current scams and how to avoid becoming a victim, please visit the Scamwatch website. You can also read the ACCC’s Little Black Book of Scams or Bankwest’s Safe and Savvy Guide, specifically designed to help elderly Australians avoid scams and fraud.