Protecting yourself against scams

Scammers use all kinds of approaches to steal your personal details. If the obtain these details they can use your identity to commit fraudulent activities such as using your credit card or opening a bank account.

How do scammers steal?

Generally, scammers use a number of different types of scams to steal your money and/or identity. The majority of scams rely on a couple of common key things to be successful. Knowing what these are can help avoid you from being scammed.

These can include:

  • Obtaining your personal details – scammers need your personal details such as full name, date of birth, address, phone number, mother’s maiden name and answers to other security questions such as first pet or dream job.
  • Obtaining your account details – scammers may try and get your bank, superannuation, utility account details, PIN numbers, credit card details or other account numbers that can access either financial accounts or help confirm personal details
  • Tricking you into actively doing something – this could include clicking on a link in a text message or email, provide personal, financial or other details to an unknown caller or person, sending money either electronically, credit card or cheque/money order

Tips to protect yourself

Remember, everything about a scam will look, feel and appear real. Every scam is slightly different however, there are some common things you can do to protect yourself from being scammed.

These include:

  • Never respond to unsolicited messages and calls that ask for personal or financial details – just delete the message or hang up
  • Never provide a stranger with remote access to your computer, even if they claim to be from a telco company such as Telstra or the NBN Co
  • To verify the legitimacy of a contact, find them through an independent source such as a phone book, past bill or online search
  • Never send money to an unknown person or business prior to receiving the goods and/or services.

More information

To report a scam or suspected scam, or for further information and assistance, visit the ACCC’s Scamwatch or phone Monash Council’s Community Safety Officer on 9518 3555.





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Last updated: 27 May 2020