A timely reminder on what to look out for following the recent data breaches at Medibank and Optus, you can now expect scammers will attempt to contact people and use the personal data obtained to cause financial and other harm.

Scammers go to extraordinary lengths to impersonate trusted organisations, like the ATO, banks, insurers, debt collectors and other financial institutions.
They try to make things look authentic and will create fake login webpages for government services and send emails that look and sound like something you expect to receive.

But there are always a few details that can give away a scam, most reputable institutions will never:

  • Ask you for your personal information on social media platforms
    • Only use verified accounts and never give out personal identifying information on social media like your TFN or bank account details.
  • Request payment of a debt through gift cards, cryptocurrency or cardless cash.
  • Send you a link to login to online services in an email or text message.
    • This is a tactic scammers use to harvest information so we’ll never include these in our communications.
  • Threaten you with immediate arrest.
    • If this happens report the incident


You can also take steps to further protect yourself by:

  • Making sure you update your devices with the latest virus software.
  • Apply multi-factor authentication where possible.
  • Use a password manager so that you have a different password on each account.
    • That way if someone gets your password they cant try it on all your other logins.
  • Don’t open emails or messages from people you do not know, look at the domain name and how the email  looks and feels.
    • Many scams are poor efforts and easily recognisable.


Investment scams are also on the rise

  • Look for red flags such as international phone numbers, newly established websites, guaranteed initial investments, higher than normal rates of return, or cold contact claiming to be from reputable companies.
  • Does this feel right? If in doubt, don’t act. If it seems to good then it probably is not legit.

Did you know that between January to September this year, Australians lost $294 million to investment scams? That’s a 158% increase compared to the same time last year*.

Be vigilant of the warning signs and take steps to protect yourselves

The ATO has information online about identifying scams on their verify or report a scam page


Macquarie has a lot of information on it  website also


Please call if you would like to discuss this further.

VJC Accounting

General Advice warning: the information in this article is general in nature, it is not advice specific to your needs. If you want to act upon the information in this article, then you should seek advice from a qualified professional. VJC accepts no liability to any party for acting from this information unless they have sought advice in a formal engagement with VJC for this purpose.