Po­lice tar­get of email scam

Warn­ing to be wary of re­quests for bank de­tails

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - CHAR­LIE PEEL char­lie.peel@news.com.au

BRAZEN scam­mers are thumb­ing their noses at fraud laws, even tar­get­ing Townsville po­lice in their latest scam.

Of­fi­cial po­lice email ac­counts were tar­geted in an email scam in­volv­ing fake Red Bull ad­ver­tis­ers of­fer­ing $ 500 a week for any­one will­ing to place a logo on their ve­hi­cle.

Se­nior Com­mu­nity Crime Preven­tion Of­fi­cer Brad Tay­lor, who re­ceived one of the emails, said the in­volve­ment of po­lice was likely due to scam­mers col­lect­ing a “pool” of email ad­dresses to tar­get.

Mr Tay­lor said the email was con­vinc­ing but, like most scams, too good to be true.

The email spruiked “no fees” and asked re­cip­i­ents to re­veal per­sonal in­for­ma­tion.

“It starts sim­ply, but once they have the ba­sic de­tails they will ask for bank ac­count de­tails so they can trans­fer the money,” Mr Tay­lor said.

The scam­mers can then take as much money as is avail­able in the ac­count.

And once it’s gone, it’s usu­ally gone for good, with po­lice lim­ited in their abil­ity to track down the funds.

Mr Tay­lor en­cour­aged any scam vic­tims to con­tact po­lice and Scamwatch via the scamwatch. gov. au web­site.

Other re­ported scams cir­cu­lat­ing in Townsville in­clude a fright­en­ing phone call that tries to con­vince the re­cip­i­ent to pay up or face ar­rest.

“One lady was told over the phone to trans­fer $ 5000 to some­one claim­ing to be from the Depart­ment of Public Pros­e­cu­tions and that po­lice were on their way with an ar­rest war­rant for un­paid taxes,” Mr Tay­lor said.

“She was so scared that she went to her neigh­bour to try and bor­row the money.”

Mr Tay­lor said any­one who re­ceived a call or email ask­ing for per­sonal in­for­ma­tion to ig­nore or delete it, or seek ad­vice from a friend if un­sure.

Pen­sioner John Parry, 72, was called last week by some­one pre­tend­ing to be from the Aus­tralian Bankers’ As­so­ci­a­tion.

“They had an ac­cent ... they tried to con­fuse me with the lan­guage bar­rier and told me they had a $ 6000 re­fund for my elec­tric­ity or phone bill.”

The caller hung up when Mr Tay­lor re­fused to re­veal any per­sonal in­for­ma­tion, but he is con­cerned more vul­ner­a­ble peo­ple could be fooled.

“Old- aged pen­sion­ers ... who aren’t switched on would be easy tar­gets for mon­grels like this,” he said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.