A scam is an attempt to trick you into parting with your money. Many scams start overseas or on the internet. This makes it hard for authorities to catch the scammers.
Most scammers contact people by phone or on the internet. Three easy ways you can protect yourself:
- hang up when someone you don’t know calls to fix your computer remotely or with a special offer and asks for personal information
- immediately delete emails from people you don’t know, and from agencies or businesses that you didn’t agree to receive emails from
- never send money online to someone you haven’t met in person.
Visit the SCAMwatch website for more tips to protect yourself and to check for alerts about current scams being reported in Australia.
Scammers are experts in gaining trust but there are often warning signs:
- Someone you don’t know and can’t check on asks for bank details over the phone.
- You win a lottery you never entered.
- You get an email about claiming an inheritance from a long lost relative.
- Emails may have poor English or incorrect grammar.
- You feel pressured to 'sign up' straight away.
- The caller wants to connect to your computer remotely to fix it.
- Someone you know online but haven’t met in person wants to borrow money.