A scam to be aware of

A Beaudesert woman reported to police that she received a call from someone alleging they were from a well-known telecommunications company and that someone was hacking her computer and she needed to transfer money to them.

The scam started when the person called the victim on her home phone number and told her that they had identified that hackers had been trying to access her bank account. They were able to log into her computer and show her apparent signs of the hackers while logged into her computer remotely.

The scammer told the victim that to catch the “hackers” they would need to catch them in the act, so the scammer was going to transfer money into her account and the victim would then need to withdraw it and transfer it elsewhere to entice the “hackers”.

The scammer then was able to show the victim remotely on her computer what looked like a deposit slip showing that they had just apparently deposited $2,800 into her bank account. The victim then went to her bank, withdrew the money and then had to go to 7-11 and use Moneygram to transfer the entire amount elsewhere.

The scam is that the $2,800 was never actually deposited into the victim’s bank account, it just appeared to be for a moment. So when the victim withdrew the $2,800 she was actually withdrawing her own money and that’s what she then transferred and now can’t recover. The victim has lost $2,800 of her own money.

Tips to protect yourself:

  • Never send money or give credit card details to anyone you don’t know or trust and never by email.
  • Avoid any arrangement with a stranger that asks for upfront payment via money order, wire transfer or international funds transfer.
  • Verify the identity of the contact by calling the relevant organisation directly – find them through an independent source such as a phone book or online search.  Do not use the contact details provided in the message sent to you.

If you have been scammed there are steps you can take to minimise the damage and prevent further loss:

  • If it’s a banking incident, contact your financial institution immediately.
  • If it’s a fraud or theft, contact your local police via Policelink on 131 444.

Report scams to the ACCC via https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/report-a-scam. This helps to warn others about current scams, monitor trends and disrupts scams where possible.

For further information visit https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/get-help/where-to-get-help.

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