ScamWatch, an organisation managed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has issued a warning about scammers posing as representatives of the National Broadband Network (nbn™), known to be targeting senior Australians.
These callers are posing as nbn™ agents and through a conversation are extracting personal information such as full name, birthdate, addresses and in some cases, payment details
One incident reported by the Bega District News involves a resident in Wallaga Lake. A caller attempted to extort payment for a non-existent nbn™ internet service by requesting iTunes cards worth $300.
Cliff Tarrant was phoned by a scammer and offered a phone and internet plan costing $49 per month, labelled as a government subsidy for senior citizens.
Fortunately, Mr Tarrant has cancelled the transaction and has reported the incident.
“He told me to buy three $100 [iTunes gift] cards. He told me to tell the shop staff they were for my grandchildren.”
To date, there is no government funded subsidy for a discounted nbn™ plan for Australia’s senior citizens.
The ACCC and ScamWatch have stated older Australians are being targeted by scammers posing as representatives from either a telco or the nbn™ as seniors are viewed as less likely to be tech-savvy.
According to ScamWatch, there have been 2649 reported cases of scammers posing as network representatives and losses have amount to $37,347 since May 2017.
As the nbn™ is halfway through its completion and more areas are being connected, scammers have been trying to capitalise on the rollout with a number of tactics, ranging from pre-sales, special offers, reservation fees and too good to be true discounted prices for phone and internet.
New web-based scams have also been circulating, with customers filling in surveys about the nbn or their provider and being asked to pay postage for a reward, only to be charged astronomical subscription fees.
If you have been affected by any of these scams please contact your bank and ScamWatch.