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If in doubt, don’t

That’s the message Consumer Affairs Victoria – the state’s fair trading regulator – is giving older Victorians when it comes to staying safe online.

Many older Victorians are attractive targets for scammers, because they often own substantial assets and have access to life savings and superannuation.

Older Victorians are also the fastest growing online user group in the country. Many of you go online to keep in touch with your children, family and friends, to correspond via email, watch YouTube videos or catch-up TV, or to research and book travel.

Life events such as financial hardship and recovering from illness, loss and trauma can also leave you more vulnerable to scams.

Consumer Affairs Victoria is working to reduce the harm caused by scammers by building greater awareness and understanding of online scams among older Victorians.

Scammers are professional criminals. Anyone can fall for a scam because scammers are getting smarter and using more sophisticated tricks to dupe thousands of older Victorians every year.

Here are some tips for staying safe online:

  • Do not open suspicious text messages, pop-up windows, or emails.
  • Be wary of any emails or requests on social media from people you do not know.
  • Avoid sending money, personal or financial details to someone you have never met in person, especially if you are online dating.

Maria’s story

Maria lost thousands of dollars in a romance scam. Watch her story, as she explains how to look for signs that things may not be as they seem.

And remember; if in doubt, don’t.

For more information on common types of scams, tips on how to identify, avoid or report them, visit consumer.vic.gov.au/scamsavvy

Think you’re a scam-savvy senior? Take the quiz and find out at consumer.vic.gov.au/scamsquiz
And remember; if in doubt, don’t.

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4 Responses to If in doubt, don’t

  1. Brian Miller says:

    Had a call 1/6/2017 from “Call Blocking Department”. Caller asked me to grant access to my computer so that they can monitor nuisance calls. Told caller “goodbye” and hung up.

  2. Hi Brain,

    Thank you for sharing your experience and yes, that is definitely a suspicious call.
    Kind regards,

    COTA Victoria Team

  3. John L. Hill-Murray says:

    I have just been scammed. Very clever from Mrs. Mary Hamilton with referal to DHL Delivery Couriers, Delivery Officer Mr. Robert Edward.
    I shall contact my bank tomorrow morning.
    What next?
    J.L.H-M

  4. Hi Jhon,

    Thank you for sharing your experience. As the campaign says “If in doubt, don’t”
    Here the is the quiz for you and everybody to practice to be scam savvy https://www.consumer.vic.gov.au/scamsquiz
    Also the campaigns website https://www.consumer.vic.gov.au/scamsavvy has more information about different type of scams.

    Kind regards,

    COTA Victoria Team