Local financial institutions say there has been an increase in remote access scams experienced by customers recently.
Scammers contact you by phone, email, or text message and the remote scam usually involves being contacted by someone claiming they are from a well-known organisation or government department, requesting you to download software or an app, from which they gain access to your computer or mobile device.
The scammers may say you are due a refund or owe money, that they’re checking on people taking money from your accounts, or they need to check something on your computer or mobile device.
Remote access scammers are after access to your computer or mobile phone which will enable them to see the information on your device. Once access is shared, scammers often persuade you to sign into online banking and perform transactions, or they will perform transactions themselves.
What to look out for
- Someone contacts you needing assistance to catch hackers, fix NBN or computer issues, help with secretive tasks or to provide a refund/collect money owed.
- An unexpected caller is asking to access your device by downloading software (e.g. Team Viewer, Any Desk or Quick Support). They may ask you not to tell anyone.
- A caller is asking you to sign into online banking or share security codes.
- A caller asks you to make transactions, or ‘refund’ a deposit you see in your account and tells you what to say to your bank.
What to do
- Hang up or cease contact with the scammer immediately.
- Never download any apps or software, or click on any links supplied to you by someone you haven’t contacted.
- Financial institutions, government agencies and most organisations will never contact you requesting access to your device, share your passwords, security codes or other personal information via a pop-up or a phone call. Never share these with anyone, regardless of the claims being made. Always call organisations back on trusted numbers found on their website or phone directory to validate any of these types of requests.
- If you think you have provided your account details to a scammer, contact your bank or financial institution immediately.
- If you have given remote access to your computer, or you fear that your computer has been hacked, switch it off immediately and seek help or advice from a qualified and reputable computer technician.
If you think you have been involved in a remote access scam on your computer or phone, please contact your bank or credit union immediately.