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Scammers Are Now Targeting Previous Scam Victims Under the Pretense of Helping Them

Krishi Chowdhary Journalist Author expertise
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  • Australia’s Competition and Consumer Commission has issued a warning that some scammers are now targeting previous scam victims.
  • They are pretending to be trusted third parties who want to help them recover their funds. But in reality, it’s a bait for a second scam.
  • The authorities have already started taking steps but considering 158 such incidents have already been reported and the losses go up to AU$2.9 million, the ACCC needs to hurry up.

Scammers Target Previous Scam Victims Under The Guise of Help

A brand new type of scam has hit the market that has left authorities puzzled. Scammers are targeting previous scam victims and in the name of helping them, are scamming them again. Australia’s Competition and Consumer Commission issued a warning today.

‘Victims of previous scams are easily identified by criminals who commonly keep and sell information about individuals they have exploited’ – Australia’s Competition and Consumer Commission

Senior citizens, those over 65 are the most common victims of this scam. 158 reports have already been registered with the ACCC and the losses amount to over AU$2.9 million ($1.9 million), including losses from the original scam.

The Commission believes that the actual number can be much higher considering some attacks never get reported.

How Does This Scam Work?

Here’s how scammers are tricking past victims.

Step 1 – Scammers pretend to be trusted third parties such as lawyers, government agencies, fund recovery services, consumer advocacy groups, or charities.

Step 2 – Then they reach out to the victims of previous scams with a promise to help them recover their data. In return, they ask for payment in terms of an upfront fee, a percentage of the recovered fund, or through tax payment. This is where they first dupe the victim.

Step 3 – Next, they often ask for personal details claiming that they need to verify the user or create a digital wallet (in the case of a cryptocurrency scam). If the victim falls for the trick, this information is later used in other forms of scams.

Step 4 – In some extreme cases, the scammer also asks for remote access to the victim’s device which gives them complete access to everything the user has on their device including passwords, documents, personal images/videos, and credit card information.

Step 5 – There’s another way scammers are getting to these victims. They pretend to be victims themselves who somehow managed to get their money back and they offer their so-called expertise to others through popup ads, websites, or social media platforms.

Two such websites have already been flagged by the Commission and one of them was taken down by the Australian authorities. While this is good news, it’s not going to help the victims get their money back. And unless some arrests are made, more such websites will keep popping up.

So to tackle this issue, the government has decided to create a mandatory code that will be applied to banks, digital communications platforms, and telecommunications providers and each of them will have certain obligations to detect, stop, or compensate victims for scams.

However, when this code will be introduced is yet to be known. Given the increasing number of reports, we can only hope that the ACCC takes quick action.

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Krishi Chowdhary Journalist

Krishi Chowdhary Journalist

Krishi is an eager Tech Journalist and content writer for both B2B and B2C, with a focus on making the process of purchasing software easier for businesses and enhancing their online presence and SEO.

Krishi has a special skill set in writing about technology news, creating educational content on customer relationship management (CRM) software, and recommending project management tools that can help small businesses increase their revenue.

Alongside his writing and blogging work, Krishi's other hobbies include studying the financial markets and cricket.

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