Scammers posing as NBN reps aiming to steal Aussie identites
CONSUMERS CONNED OUT OF $28,000 IN EIGHT MONTHS.
Fraudsters pretending to be NBN staff are cold-calling homes to sign unsuspecting consumers up for fake broadband accounts for cheap prices, then asking for sensitive personal information, like names, dates of birth and Medicare numbers, which can be used to access bank accounts and super funds. The Australian consumer watchdog, ACCC, and government organisation Scamwatch have seen a rise in complaints from the public — 316 since January this year — with over $28,000 scammed from unsuspecting people in the last eight months.
The scammers seem to be targeting retirees and over- 65s for the most part, with one of the most common cons being payment for the fake accounts to be made in iTunes gift cards. Another scam involves gaining access to “computers used in a hacking incident”, with fraudsters then installing malicious software, stealing personal information, then demanding payment for the so-called service. ACCC Deputy Chair Delia Rickard is warning Australians, especially the over- 65s, that NBN Co is a wholesaler and would never contact consumers directly. “If you get an unsolicited call like this, it’s a big red flag that you’re dealing with a scammer,” she said.