Have you ever received a phone call or SMS out of the blue, a phishy email or ‘lucky’ letter, an unknown knock at the door or a strange request from an online friend or admirer? National Consumer Fraud Week 2012 runs from 19 to 25 March and is all about raising awareness of scam delivery methods so that you can identify and slam a scam at the point of contact.
Scammers are increasingly sophisticated in how they deliver scams, taking advantage of new technology and communication methods to try and slip under your radar. Online platforms and mobile technology such as emails, social networking sites, smartphones and tablets make it easier to connect with people around the world and communicate in real time anonymously, privately or publicly. Unfortunately, scammers also take advantage of these benefits to target you.
Scammers are also not afraid to adopt a personal touch such as contacting you at home on your phone or at your door. They will try and push your buttons by playing on your emotions to evoke a sense of guilt, anxiety or fear. They also use slick tricks such as professional-looking websites or documents, and often pose as someone or an organisation that you know and trust.
Scammers will use any means to deliver a scam and get you to part with your money or personal details. If you receive a scam, slam it!
Remember to press delete, throw it out, shut the door or just hang up.
Tips to keep scammers at arms length
DON’T RESPOND Ignore suspicious emails, letters, house visits, phone calls or SMS – press ‘delete’, throw them out, shut the door or just hang up
WATCH OUT FOR SLICK TRICKS Scammers use sophisticated tricks to fool you such as fake websites, glossy brochures, technical jargon or posing as someone that you know and trust – don’t fall for them!
DON’T LET SCAMMERS PUSH YOUR BUTTONS Scammers will play on your emotions to get what they want
PROTECT YOUR IDENTITY Your personal details are private and invaluable – keep them that way and away from scammers
Fighting fraud: we can all play a part.
2012 partners of the Australasian Consumer Fraud Taskforce
The work of the ACFT is greatly assisted by a growing number of government, business and community group partners. ACFT partners all recognise the seriousness of consumer fraud in Australasia and are committed to disseminating the ACFT's message to consumers during National Consumer Fraud Week.
In 2011 scams received over the phone were the most common scams reported to the ACCC. Consumers and small businesses contacted the ACCC almost 43,000 times in 2011 to report scams they had received by phone.