It seems scammers are taking full advantage of vulnerable Australians and have started focusing heavily on coronavirus-related scams. Scamwatch, the national watchdog run by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), revealed that over 3,400 reported scams have mentioned coronavirus, adding up to more than $1,790,000 in reported losses, since the outbreak of the pandemic earlier this year.
The most common scams include phishing for personal information, online shopping and superannuation scams. Consumers have been warned that scammers are looking for those who’ve let their guard down amid a confusing time and will use the opportunity to ask for personal, banking or superannuation details.
Scammers often pretend they have some kind of connection to their targets by fronting as a trusted organisation such as governments, banks or superannuation companies. To help consumers stay vigilant, Scamwatch laid out some of the most common scams to recognise and report but warned consumers to take extra care regardless and always report if there are any doubts at all.
One of the big ones to look out for are government impersonation scams which involve scammers pretending to be government agencies providing information on Covid-19. They’ll usually send through a text or email that ‘phishes’ for personal information and also generally contains malicious links or attachments that are designed to steal straight from the pockets of consumers.
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