Department of Consumer Protection renews warning of tax office scam

Seniors are being targeted in a tax office scam, causing a renewed warning from the Department of Consumer Protection.

In the most recent case, scammers telephoned a 74-year-old woman claiming they were from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and demanded she pay a $500 tax bill or be sent to prison. In order to transfer the money they told her to use a Load&Go prepaid credit card.

At least 10 people have reported the ATO scam this year, with losses totaling $25,000.

Commissioner for Consumer Protection Anne Driscoll is concerned that the threatening nature of the scam calls is intimidating seniors in our community.

β€œThe ATO scam has been around for many years but I am concerned that the scammers are now turning to threatening tactics to coerce their victims into transferring money in order to get fictitious refunds or rebates,” Ms Driscoll said.

For more information please see, https://www.commerce.wa.gov.au/announcements/perth-seniors-targeted-ato-scam

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-08-07/wa-pensioners-getting-ripped-off-by-ato-scam/5656074

Michael Duncan