Every year, thousands of Australians are targeted by scams, whether it be online, via phone, mail or even in person.
The Avon Valley Advocate has compiled a list of current scams identified on scamwatch.gov.au, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's website dedicated to informing people about fraudulent and dishonest activities:
- Scammers are adapting existing technology to play on people's fears around coronavirus and selling products claiming to prevent or cure the virus.
- Phishing scams are sent via email or text message that claim to be providing official information on coronavirus but are attempts to try and obtain personal data.
- Other scams include people receiving misinformation about cures for coronavirus and investment scams claiming coronavirus has created opportunities to make money.
- Scammers are also impersonating official organisations such as the World Health Organization and the Department of Health or legitimate businesses such as travel agents and telecommunications companies.
- For the most up-to-date information about the coronavirus, visit the Department of Health and the World Health Organization websites directly.
Remote access scams
- Scammer will phone you and pretend to be a staff member from a large telecommunications or computer company, such as Telstra, the NBN or Microsoft.
- They will tell you that your computer has been sending error messages or that it has a virus. They may mention problems with your internet connection or your phone line and say it has affected your computer's recent performance. May claim your broadband connection has been hacked.
- The caller will request remote access to your computer to 'find out what the problem is'.
- Scammer may try to talk you into buying unnecessary software to 'fix' the computer, or may ask for personal details and bank or credit card details.