Thursday 23rd February 2017

Do you know how to spot a tax related scam?

  • tactica-brain

We continue to see instances of scam emails, SMS or phone calls where criminals try to steal money or information. These scams can be very convincing and many individuals fall victim to these each year.

To avoid becoming a victim, it is important that you know some of the common characteristics of a scam.

Scam communications:

  • are unsolicited
  • are pushy and can be intimidating, threatening arrests or penalties if payment for an unknown tax debt is not made immediately
  • demand payment in full and in some instances via unconventional means such as iTunes cards, cash transfers or gift vouchers
  • ask you for your personal or financial information or to confirm information they pretend they have
  • are often poorly worded, containing spelling and grammatical mistakes
  • may promise you a tax refund in exchange for a payment or personal information
  • may contain an attachment or fake links requesting you to lodge a form – opening these attachments or links can cause you to download spyware or a virus.

If a scammer or someone claiming to be from the ATO has contacted you and you are unsure of the legitimacy, let us know.

For phone scams you should:

  • hang up immediately
  • call the ATO dedicated spam reporting line 1800 008 540

For email scams you should:

  • refrain from clicking on links or opening attachments
  • forward the email to ReportEmailFraud@ato.gov.au

 

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