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What are some scams I need to be aware of?

Latest security alerts 

COVID-19 related scams

Against the backdrop of the current COVID-19 outbreak, online fraud and related scams are set to rise as fraudsters take advantage of the massive surge in online shopping and people’s curiosity for information. Here are a couple of trends to look out for:

  • People are receiving unsolicited calls from scammers purporting to be from Medicare requesting personal details to issue Government rebates for pension recipients. This is a scam, and you should not disclose your personal information to unsolicited callers. Government agencies will not usually make outbound calls to collect such information; they would already have these details to process any such payment.
  • The overwhelming news coverage surrounding COVID-19 has created opportunities for phishing and smishing attacks looking to exploit public curiosity and fear. Fraudsters are sending SMS messages and emails claiming to be from legitimate organisations (such as health authorities), with information on COVID-19, such as where to get tested or where to buy vaccines. The SMS or email messages will ask you to open an attachment which is embedded with malicious software that downloads automatically onto your device. The malware will then allow fraudsters to take control of your computer, log your keystrokes, or access your personal information and financial data, which could then lead to identity theft.

Watch the video here to learn more about Phishing, and how to protect yourself.

DYRE malware

Variants of the DYRE malware continue to target online banking customers worldwide.

DYRE, also known as Dryeza, is a malicious program used by cybercriminals to steal online banking credentials and perform fraudulent transactions. DYRE is usually spread by phishing emails containing attachments or hyperlinks that, once opened, can exploit your computer's existing security flaws to install the malware. Once installed, DYRE can redirect websites through servers operated by criminals, allowing them to capture and alter data in real time.

Signs of a DYRE infection include:

  • Repeated request for User ID, Password and/or One-Time PIN (OTP)
  • Changes in the appearance or procedures of online banking
  • Delays and persistent "loading" screens.

Customers who notice unusual behaviour in their online banking or believe their computer may be infected should immediately contact us on 1300 992 700 or +61 2 8222 2569 if you are overseas.

SIM Porting Fraud and SIM Swapping Fraud

What is it?

SIM Porting Fraud occurs when a fraudster asks for your existing mobile number to be moved (or "ported") to another phone carrier without your consent or knowledge.

SIM Swapping Fraud occurs where a fraudster asks for a new SIM card to be issued for your existing mobile by approaching your mobile operator without your consent or knowledge.

With the mobile phone now being the primary method that people access their banking accounts and other important services, keeping your mobile safe is more important than ever. A fraudster gaining access to your mobile phone by means of SIM Porting or SIM Swapping can lead to unauthorised access to your digital accounts by intercepting authorisation texts or overriding touch authentication.

How does it work?

  • The fraudster obtains the victim's personal details via various techniques including mail theft, online compromises (e.g. malware, Trojans), phone and email phishing scams or through the illegal purchase of stolen personal data etc.
  • The fraudster approaches the victim's mobile operator with the victim's identity and requests  a duplicate SIM card or asks for the mobile number to be ported to another phone carrier.
  • The victim's mobile operator deactivates the original SIM card and issues a replacement SIM or ports the number to the new carrier.
  • The fraudster is now able to carry out financial transactions without the victim's consent or knowledge by intercepting calls or texts, receiving one time passwords or PINs and overriding touch authentication on the swapped or ported SIM.

Tips to safeguard yourself

  • If your mobile service stops working unexpectedly, check in with your mobile service provider immediately.
  • Look out for SMS text messages from your mobile service provider advising you about a swapping or porting request.
  • Never disclose your internet banking password, or PIN to anyone.  We will never ask you for these details via any of our communications to you.
  • Beware of unsolicited calls, texts or emails asking for personal or financial information even if they appear to be from your bank or a reputable company.
  • Do not open or forward emails that you suspect might be spam and never open any attachments or click into any links in such emails.
  • Be careful of what personal details you share on social media platforms as fraudsters can use these to anticipate likely answers to security questions.
  • Ensure you have up to date anti-virus protection software installed on your computer.

Online fraud

Email scams

  • You may receive phishing emails that contain links or malicious attachments that could capture your details or harm your device. These emails seek to trick people into giving out personal details including banking details. They are designed to look legitimate and often contain a corporate logo.

Malicious software

  • Malware, or malicious software, is an intrusive program that fraudsters try to install on your computer or device. Malware, such as a virus or Trojan, can disrupt or slow down operations, gather personal and financial details, extract funds or perform other fraudulent activities under your name.
  • Malware is usually sent as an attachment to emails claiming to be from a trusted source, or disguised as genuine software.

Mobile fraud

Phishing over the phone

  • Phishing, traditionally where emails seek to trick people into disclosing their account or personal details, is now increasingly happening over the phone. Be particularly vigilant if you're asked to disclose any online banking sign in details or authentication code sent by SMS to your mobile.
  • Protect your SMS authentication codes like you would a password or a PIN. Disclosing an SMS authentication code contravenes our terms and conditions and may find you liable for any losses due to fraud on your account.

SMS phishing

  • Fraudsters can spoof the sender name so they may appear to be from a trusted source. These SMSs often use scare tactics and contain links to fake websites in an attempt to capture your passwords and other sensitive information.

Credit card fraud

  • Credit card fraud can occur when someone obtains your credit card details and uses them over the phone or on the Internet to make purchases in your name. You should always carefully check your statement each month to determine if there are charges for purchases you did not make.
  • Fraud can also occur when a person assumes your entire identity and obtains credit cards in your name.
  • If you suspect that fraud has occurred on your card, it's important to contact Qantas Money support immediately on 1300 992 700 or + 61 2 8222 2569 if you are overseas. We will assist you with blocking your card (as well as any other card that’s affected) and investigating the fraudulent activity.

Reporting scams

Report any scams to Scamwatch, an independent website run by the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC).

Scamwatch provides information to consumers and small businesses on how to recognise, avoid and report scams. 

Stay up to date

Register for Stay Smart Online Alert Service, a free Government-run service to alert you of new online threats as they are identified.

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