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Retirement

Your social media account is being watched, ACCC warns

  • April 29 2019
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Retirement

Your social media account is being watched, ACCC warns

By Cameron Micallef
April 29 2019

The ACCC’s Targeting scams report released today shows that scammers have adapted their methods and are now actively targeting victims through social media.

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Your social media account is being watched, ACCC warns

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  • April 29 2019
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The ACCC’s Targeting scams report released today shows that scammers have adapted their methods and are now actively targeting victims through social media.

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In 2018, $15.7 million was reported lost after the victim received a prompt through social media such as Facebook and Twitter. These losses totaled nearly 14.7 per cent of the total losses reported.

Of this, $9.3 million was through dating and romance scams, with nearly 34 per cent of reports resulting in financial loss to the victim. In total, the ACCC Scamwatch website received 6,828 reports, which is an increase of 2,117 from the previous year.

ACCC deputy chair Delia Rickards believes scammers are adapting old scams with new technologies, seeking payments in unusual methods to increase their reach to potential victims.

“Scammers increasingly ask for money via iTunes cards, Google Play cards and cryptocurrencies to avoid the anti-scam measures employed by banks and money laundering detection systems,” said Ms Rickards.

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In November, reports from the ATO suggested scams have increased by over 900 per cent using pressure, fear tactics and technology to make victims part from their money.

It’s not only individuals, but also Australian businesses that are being compromised with reports of losses exceeding $60 million in 2018.

Scammers are hacking business email systems and impersonating key personnel in emails, requesting that the victims change key account details so money is transferred to the scammer’s account instead of where it should go.

“The ACCC has been working with banks, financial intermediaries and online classified sites to disrupt scams, but this year we, along with the ACMA and ACSC, would also like to see social media platforms and telecommunications providers doing more to limit the ability of scammers to connect with victims,” Ms Rickard said.

Your social media account is being watched, ACCC warns
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About the author

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Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

About the author

Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

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