Advances in technology are making identity fraud one of the fastest growing crimes in Australia with $634 million lost to scams in 2019 alone.1 Common techniques used by scammers to manipulate their victims include making exclusive offers that you ‘don’t want to miss out on’ or asking for small commitments, such as completing a survey, to make you more likely to comply with larger schemes down the track.
Not all scams are done online. In fact, the majority of scams are done via the phone (41.4%) followed by email (24%) and text message (16.6%). Scammers are clever and everyone can be vulnerable to scams. Being informed can help you identify and avoid scams.
Identity fraud occurs when a person uses a stolen identity to obtain credit, goods or other services fraudulently. This can happen if the person acquires sensitive or personal information, such as name, residential address, bank details, date of birth, or passwords.
Generally, there is an increase of scams around tax time, but they do occur all year round. The Australian Government regularly issues free alerts to help keep you and your identity safe. Check out the most recent security risks and advice on how to manage them at Stay Smart Online.
We're serious about protecting your information. That's why we'll never send you an email asking you to verify your personal information or provide your password, member number or other account details. If you receive such an email we recommend you don't respond to it under any circumstances and forward it to firstname.lastname@example.org, then delete it.
1Australian Competitor & Consumer Commission, Targeting scams 2019