Phone Scam explosion in Australia report a loss of A$211 million

Highlights 

  • A phone-based scam in which the users receive suspicious voicemails, texts and phone calls to steal personal data has fuelled this year in Australia.
  • ACCC reported loss of AU$211 million this year.
  • For the same period, AU$11,000 is the average loss this year and AU$7,000 was the average loss last year.

A phone-based scam in which the users receive suspicious voicemails, texts and phone calls to steal personal data has fuelled this year, resulting in huge monetary losses across Australia.

So far this year, a loss of AU$211 million to scam, that is, 89% increase in comparison to the previous year is reported by scamwatch on 27 September.

In comparison to the last year, the cases of financial losses have decreased but the people are losing a large amount. For the same period, AU$11,000 is the average loss this year and AU$7,000 was the average loss last year.

Delia Rickard, ACCC Deputy Chair stated that it is a concern that scams are becoming complex and money is stolen by unsuspecting people.

What is the working of a phone scam?

Ms Rickard stated that people receive texts and calls from the scammer that claims to be a government body or a business with the aim to steal personal data. These scammers will pretend to extend some benefit, claim or money.

So, how to safeguard ourselves from such scams?

She suggests that “Do not click on any links in messages that come to you out of the blue, and never provide any of your personal or banking details to someone you don’t personally know and trust.” “If you think something might be legitimate, call the organisation or government agency back using details you find in an independent search, rather than the details provided.”

Bottom Line

The phone scam has exploded in Australia again and this time, the loss reported is higher than the last year. The scammers are not identifiable and the rate of scams is increasing, creating a situation of concern for the Australian government agencies. It is strongly recommended by the ACCC to reach out to Scamwatch in case they come in contact with any scammer.

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