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Losses to NBN scams almost triple in 2019

Consumers have lost an average of more than $110,000 each month between January and May this year to NBN scams.

  • Maja Garaca Djurdjevic
  • June 18, 2019
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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has revealed losses to NBN scams in 2019 are already higher than the total of last year’s losses, and are running at three times the number of successful scams in 2018.

Consumers lost an average of more than $110,000 each month between January and May this year, compared with around $38,500 in monthly average losses throughout 2018 – an increase of nearly 300 per cent.  

“People aged over 65 are particularly vulnerable, making the most reports and losing more than $330,000 this year. That’s more than 60 per cent of the current losses,” ACCC acting chair Delia Rickard said.

“Scammers are increasingly using trusted brands like ‘NBN’ to trick unsuspecting consumers into parting with their money or personal information.”

One of the most common NBN scams includes calling a consumer and impersonating NBN Co or an internet service provider and gaining remote access to their computer. The scammer can then install malware or steal valuable personal information, including banking details.

“We will never make unsolicited calls or door knock to sell broadband services to the public. People need to contact their preferred phone and internet service provider to make the switch,” NBN Co chief security officer Darren Kane said. 

“We will never request remote access to a resident’s computer and we will never make unsolicited requests for payment or financial information.”

Ms Rickard advised users to never give an unsolicited caller remote access to their computer, and never give out their personal, credit card or online account details to anyone.

“It’s also important to know that NBN does not make automated calls to tell you that you will be disconnected. If you get a call like this just hang up. If you think a scammer has gained access to your personal information, such as bank account details, contact your financial institution immediately," she concluded. 

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