COVID-19 related scams happening in other countries have surfaced in Australia, so it’s important to be vigilant. Here are some of the scams reported around the globe:
Online offers for vaccines, pills, potions, lozenges or other prescription or over-the-counter products that falsely claim to treat or cure COVID-19 (no cures currently exist).
- Fraudulent and deceptive online ads and websites offering bogus cleaning products, hand sanitisers and other items in high demand.
- Online offers for vaccines, pills, potions, lozenges or other prescription or over-the-counter products that falsely claim to treat or cure COVID-19 (no cures currently exist).
- Links to fake charities and fraudulent websites which may solicit donations for relief efforts or deliver malware.
- COVID-19 stock scams about hot new companies that falsely claim to focus on COVID-19 related products and services.
- Scammers calling victims pretending to be medical or health officials, claiming a relative has fallen sick with the COVID-19 coronavirus and requesting payment for their treatment.
- SMS messages impersonating government agencies with links that if clicked install malicious software on your device to steal your banking and personal details.
- Scammers sending ‘phishing’ emails pretending to be from health authorities, or legitimate companies, by using similar looking websites or email addresses. These emails often contain malicious links and PDFs that offer to provide/share with you information on how to protect yourself from COVID-19.
Visit the Consumer Protection COVID-19 coronavirus FAQ page for information regarding your consumer rights considering the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
The latest scams in Australia
Visit our latest COVID-19 scams in Australia to stay ontop of the COVID-19 scams that are currently circulating in Australia.
How to protect yourself from these scams
Scams can look genuine and it can be difficult to tell when something is fake. However, there are some common signs that something may be a scam, including:
- the email, text or phone call is unexpected
- there’s a deadline or sense of urgency
- there’s a promise of financial benefit or a threat of fines, debts or jail.
Beware of unsolicited COVID-19 coronavirus advisory emails with links or attachments. Fraudsters may spoof the information of government and health care organisations, health service providers, and news agencies.
- Find the latest COVID-19 information available from the State Government website, the WA Department of Health and the Australian Government Department of Health.
- Contact the Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.
- Visit the World Health Organization website.
- Contact your insurance provider for answers to any health insurance questions.
- Visit only reliable online news sources for the latest updates related to COVID-19.
Never give money or your financial details to someone you don’t know - it’s rare to recover money from a scammer. If you think your banking or financial details have been compromised, contact your financial institution immediately.