August 27, 2013

ATO Tax Related Scams

Refund scams

There are a number of refund scam emails currently circulating. These emails claim to come from the ATO and offer a tax refund. Generally, they link to a bogus ATO website asking for personal and credit card details. These emails can differ in their appearance and level of sophistication but will generally state that you are eligible for a refund and instruct you to click on a link to submit a form to receive it. The ATO will never email you asking for personal or credit card details and you should never provide this information.

One version of this scam contains an attachment infected with a virus. This email purports to be from the ATO and asks for the recipient to complete the attached form to receive a tax refund. There is zip file attached to the message that contains a malicious program. If you receive an email like this, do not open the attachment.

Under no circumstances should you give personal information including credit card or banking details. Anyone who has received a suspicious phone call or email should contact us immediately.

Key indicators of this scam include:
  • the email asks you to provide personal details. You should always be suspicious of this
  • it is poorly worded with spelling and grammatical mistakes (though this is not always the case)
  • includes an attachment (form) or link to a webpage to lodge a form
  • comes from an email address which is not a valid ATO email address
  • asks for credit card and PIN numbers.
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