A scam is a fake scheme designed to deceive people, generally for the purpose of stealing money, goods or personal details.
A number of Tasmanians have been ripped off by ‘Travelling Conmen’ offering cheap deals valid for 'today only'. Jobs such as painting or roof and driveway repairs are common tasks offered at a cheap rate.
Scamwatch provides information on common scams that you should look out for. Learn how to recognise and protect yourself.
Tips to avoid being scammed
Be alert to the fact that scams exist. If an offer looks too good to be true, it probably is.
To protect yourself and others from scams, beware they can be offered in many ways, including:
- fake websites
- professional glossy brochures
- persons posing as someone of trust, such as a Government representative.
Protect your bank accounts
- never give money, credit card details or online account details to anyone you don’t know and trust
- keep your receipts
- check your bank account and credit card statements
- report any unexplained transactions to your bank
- keep your bank cards safe
- make sure nobody else knows your PIN number.
Protect yourself online
- always check that you’re on a secure website before making a payment
- make sure that any website you visit to make transactions (such as your bank or online shopping provider) has the correct website address in the address bar, including the correct extension (such as ‘.com.au’)
- never click on any links or open any attached files in a spam email
- always keep strict privacy settings on social networking sites
- don’t respond to text messages or missed calls that come from numbers you don’t recognise.
Protect yourself while shopping
- don’t pay any invoice unless the goods or services were both ordered and delivered
- if someone comes to your door
- you should check their identification
- you do not have to let them in
- they must leave if you ask them
- read and understand all of the terms and conditions before signing anything
- for major purchases, take the contract away with you overnight
- make sure you know how to stop any subscription service you sign up to
- always get independent advice if an offer requires a lot of your money or time.