Examples

  • Microsoft
  • Telstra
  • ATO
  • Westpac / Commonwealth Bank (any bank!)
  • Centrelink
  • Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network (ACORN)

Warning signs

  • They call you first out of the blue
  • The call begins with an automated message
  • There is a long wait before you hear a voice
  • They speak with a foreign accent
  • They supply an “Australian” looking phone number to verify (it is probably a VOIP number redirected elsewhere) or an official looking email address
  • They tell you something bad has happened like they have an arrest warrant or your utilities will be disconnected shortly
  • They ask you for access to your computer
  • They ask you to pay a fee or wire money
  • They become persistent and abusive

What to do

  • Hang up
  • Do not give any personal details or your credit card details over the phone unless you made the call and it is a phone number from a trusted source
  • Do not wire money to any account
  • Do not call a phone number they supply, even if it looks like an Australian number (it is probably a VOIP number redirected elsewhere)
  • Do not give remote computer access to a stranger
  • If in doubt, look up official number online from the official website and call them to confirm
  • Check ScamWatch to see if this is a common and current threat
  • Register with Australian Governments Do Not Call Register. This does not guarantee the calls will stop but will reduce the number of telemarketing calls.

Further info

  • https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/news/scammers-pretending-to-be-from-telstra-technical-support-continue-cold-calling-australians
  • https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/news/telephone-calls-alleging-fake-arrest-warrants-used-to-scam-money
  • https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/news/beware-of-scammers-imitating-centrelink-officers

 

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