SMS scam – tax refund notification

SMS scam – tax refund notification

The ATO has alerted taxpayers to another scam where messages are texted to people asking them to click on a link and provide personal identifying information to receive a refund. To make the messages seem more legitimate, scammers are using technology that causes them to appear in your genuine ATO message feed.

The text messages say something like “We’ve noticed you have a positive balance 320.70 AUD from last financial year. Please verify your information to provide the funds.” It then provides a link to a website. However, the website is a fake myGov website which asks users to provide their bank details, along with other personal identifying information, for “verification purposes”.

The ATO warns people not to click on any links and not to disclose the information requested.

February 2020 SMS scam – 8% bonus for people affected by natural disasters

Scammers are exploiting Australia’s recent natural disasters in an SMS scam that is asking people to click on a link and provide personal information in order to receive an 8% bonus on their tax return.

The image below is one example of the format this scam can take.

The link will take you to a fake myGov website, designed to steal your personal information. Do not click on any links and do not disclose the information requested.

Scam text message: 'Due to natural distasters, Australians are entitled to an 8% bonus on their tax return. Please begin the process by filling out the form below. Link: https://my.gov.verification-digital.com

The ATO will never send an email or SMS asking you to access online services via a hyperlink.

We will never ask you to provide any personal identifying information in order to receive a refund.

All online management of your tax affairs should be carried out in ATO online services, accessed through your genuine myGov account. Sign in to your myGov account at my.gov.au.

You can make accessing your myGov account more secure by opting to receive a security code via SMS. It’s a quick and secure way to sign in to access ATO online services.

When disasters like the recent bushfires strike, scammers will often try to take advantage of vulnerable Australians.

We do what we can to stop scammers in their tracks, but it’s important to stay vigilant and warn your family and friends.

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January 2020 SMS scam – tax refund notification

Similar to the alert we issued in August, scammers are texting people asking them to click on a link and provide personal identifying information to receive a refund.

To make the text messages seem more legitimate, scammers are using technology that causes them to appear in your genuine ATO message feed.

The image below is one example of the format this scam can take. The link in this scam will take you to a fake myGov website.

The website asks users to provide their bank details, along with other personal identifying information, for ‘verification purposes’. Do not click on any links and do not disclose the information requested.

Scam. We've noticed you have a positive balance 320.70AUD from last finacial years. Please verify your information to recieve the funds myatoservice.com/3/?ID=

The ATO will never send an email or SMS asking you to access online services via a hyperlink.

All online management of your tax affairs should be carried out in ATO online services, accessed through your genuine myGov account. Sign in to your myGov account at my.gov.au.

If you haven’t already, make accessing your myGov account more secure by opting to receive a security code via SMS. It’s a quick and secure way to sign in to access ATO online services.

We’ve initiated disruption activity to protect the community from this scam, but it’s a good idea to encourage your friends and family to keep an eye out. This is particularly important in the current environment, as scams often spike when people are most vulnerable.

For a no obligation consultation to discuss your tax position, contact us.

Source: ato.gov.au

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