We have been made aware that a client has been scammed by a caller pretending to be from the Australian Taxation Office.
The caller rang and told the client they were to be prosecuted for an outstanding tax debt over 5 years old. The client was told to pay immediately through an Apple card prepay system.
The caller stayed on the telephone until payment was made. This tactic prevented my client from calling our office to check the veracity of the caller’s claims.
What to do if you receive a similar call
- Hang up. Immediately. You do not need to be polite. These people are trying to steal your money.
- Call me. We can check with the ATO within minutes to verify whether there is any outstanding debt. If there is a debt, we are able to negotiate payment terms on your behalf.
The suspicious signs if someone calls claiming to be from the ATO are:
- The caller is abusive or threatening;
- The caller demands immediate payment;
- The contact could be by email, text or social media;
- The offer is too good to be true – for example, you have money owing to you
There are also email scams from criminals purporting to be from the Australian Taxation Office. These emails will refer to an ATO Gateway Portal, or ATO Office Portal, or something similar. They are FAKE emails.
The message here is to forward any emails like these to me for verification. We will always verify through a different, and SAFE, source.
For further information on the latest scam alert from The Australian Taxation Office, follow this link, it is safe – https://www.ato.gov.au/General/Online-services/Identity-security/Scam-alerts/.