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Four scams to watch out for

 

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Many people now use their mobile phones on a daily basis for everything from social media to shopping and banking.

Unfortunately, scammers are aware of that and are quickly coming up with new ways to try and get access to other peoples’ money.Sometimes the tactics they use are quite sophisticated and difficult to spot.

Here are four scams doing the rounds at the moment to watch out for.

  1. Romance scams

Dating and romance scams may start on an app or social media site, where someone meets someone who is not who they claim to be.

Instead of looking for love, these scammers are looking to gain access to someone’s money.

According to the ACCC, some of the tactics they use include:

  • Showing a lot of affection very quickly
  • Coming up with complicated or elaborate stories to get money
  • Not wanting to meet in person
  • Trying to get their victim to invest in something.

“Never send money or give personal or financial information to someone you’ve only met online. Think very carefully about taking investment or financial advice from someone on a dating app,” ACCC Deputy Chair Delia Rickard said.

“Do an internet search with the name or photo of your love interest or some of the phrases they have used to try to identify if it is a scam.”

  1. Investment scams

These scams try to get people to invest their money in something that’s not real, often with the promise of a high return.

According to the ACCC, words like “not-to-be-missed” or “guaranteed return” can indicate an investment scam.

The warning is to beware of out of the blue phone calls or emails with these big promises. The ACCC says you can also do a search on moneysmart.gov.au to check if they have an Australian Financial Services Licence.

  1. Shopping scams

It’s becoming far more common to do shopping online, especially since the pandemic. However, scammers are aware of this and sometimes create fake websites to try and get peoples’ money.

The ACCC advises to check if a site has an “https” at the start of it and a padlock before handing over any banking details.

  1. Scamming people who have already been scammed

The ACCC says there’s a particularly nasty scam going around that sees people who have already lost money again targeted.

Dubbed “money recovery scams”, these messages tell people they can get their money back.

“If you get contacted out of the blue by someone offering to help recover scam losses for a fee, it is a scam. Hang up the phone, delete the email and ignore any further contacts,” Ms Rickard said.

If you think you may have been the victim of a scam, you can report it to the ACCC’s Scamwatch here. 

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