Queensland floods scams emerge: ACMA, ACCC warn of email, SMS and phone scams preying on charitable donations
Posted in: Legal, Privacy & Security at 19/01/2011 17:11
More reports of spammers and telemarketers trying to cash in on the Queensland floods fundraising and charity efforts have emerged.
According to the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), a number of scams via email, phone and SMS have been identified and all calling for donations or assistance.
Consumer Alert - the ACMA warns scammers are targeting the Flood Relief Appeal [news release]
The Australian Communications and Media Authority is warning people to beware of spammers and telemarketers trying to cash in on the Queensland flood fundraising and charity efforts. The ACMA has received reports of various scams linked to flood relief and advises people to treat requests for donations or assistance made by email, SMS or phone with great caution.
Spam scam emails and SMS may look like genuine requests for donations. In one case reported to the ACMA, spammers have copied text from an official government website in order to make their request for a donation to their money transfer account look legitimate. The ACMA recommends that consumers avoid these scams by looking out for:
- Messages coming from or containing unknown or unusual email addresses and telephone numbers
- Messages containing spelling errors or poor grammar
- Requests to wire money or donate by way of money transfer
The ACMA advises that consumers should not respond to, or click on any link, in any email or SMS they have received from an unknown source. Australians can report SMS spam directly to the ACMA by forwarding it to the ACMA's Spam SMS service on 0429 999 888. Both email and SMS spam can be reported to the ACMA at www.spam.acma.gov.au.
The Queensland Government website details for the Queensland floods are: www.qld.gov.au/floods/. Further information on the floods across Australia can be found at: www.google.com/crisisresponse/queensland_floods.html.
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The ACMA is Australia's regulator for broadcasting, the internet, radiocommunications and telecommunications. The ACMA's strategic intent is to make communications and media work in Australia's public interest. For more information: www.acma.gov.au.