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Warning! – New phishing scam circulating Posted on October 9, 2018
A number of emails purporting to be from the ATO have circulated since the end of the financial year involving tax time refunds.
The latest claims a credit card number on file is out-of-date so a refund could not be processed.
It then directs the recipient to click on a link which leads to what looks like an Australian Government website where the card details can be updated.
The site also asks for identity information such as Medicare numbers, date of birth and mother’s maiden name.
Do not click on the link in the email as it opens a fake web page that will attempt to obtain your tax file number.
The ATO will never email you asking for personal or credit card details and you should never provide this information. If received you should delete the email immediately.
It may not just be identity details the scammer is after – if you open the link or attachment, your computer may be infected with malicious software.
The latest incarnation of the email phishing scam follows a similar one in which recipients were told they were entitled to a refund.
To protect yourself against ATO scams (or any other potential email scams):
If you receive an email from out of the blue from someone claiming that you are entitled to a refund – just press ‘delete’.
If you’re not sure whether an email is a scam, verify who they are by using their official contact details to call them directly. Never use contact details provided by the sender – find them through an independent source such as a phone book or online search.
Watch out for tell-tale signs – whilst the sender may claim to be from an official source, their email may contain spelling mistakes or use poor grammar.
Never click on links or open attachments in an email from an unverified sender – they may contain a malicious virus.
Keep your computer secure – always update your firewall, anti-virus and anti-spyware software, and only buy from a verified source.
If you think you have provided your tax file number to a scammer, contact the ATO immediately.
If you do need to update your details electronically with the ATO, the only place to do so is at the official website – www.ato.gov.au