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Record haul of scam mail intercepted in WA

Record haul of scam mail intercepted in WA

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

  •     100,000 scam letters intercepted by WA authorities
  •     Largest seizure of scam mail in State’s historyministerscamhaulapril13

A record haul of scam mail bound for Australian homes has been intercepted by a joint operation between Consumer Protection and Australia Post in Western Australia.

Commerce Minister Michael Mischin revealed today that more than 100,000 letters promoting various scams had been seized prior to delivery in the past few months.

“This represents the biggest haul of letters since the joint operation began more than six years ago. The 100,000 intercepted in this operation is a sharp increase on last year when ScamNet officers at Consumer Protection seized 30,000 scam letters,” Mr Mischin said.

“The interception means there is no risk of those recipients falling victim to these scams and potentially losing money. However, some letters may have slipped through, so householders need to be aware that the offers contained in them are bogus and should be discarded.”

Some of the main scams in the latest haul include:

  • Weight loss treatments and health cures that make false claims
  • A clairvoyant’s life predictions and lucky charms promising large sums of money
  • Prizes and lotteries that don’t exist, including the Aries Malaysian travel brochures which contain fake scratch cards
  • Parcel notifications, which seek a fee for luxury items awaiting delivery

Mr Mischin urged WA householders to ignore the unsolicited offers received either in the post or by email.

“Responding to these letters usually requires the recipient to provide personal as well as credit card details, making them the target of future fraud,” he said.

“By responding, recipients will also be bombarded with more junk mail that may not be intercepted.

“If people have any doubts about the authenticity of an offer, they are advised to seek advice from Consumer Protection. If they receive letters they identify as a scam, they should discard them immediately.”

Fact File

  • 130,000 scam letters seized in two years - all will soon be destroyed
  • More information on scams available online at http://www.scamnet.wa.gov.au 
  • Scam victims should contact Consumer Protection on 1300 30 40 54 or scamquery@commerce.wa.gov.au