Beware of Payment Redirection Scams: Australians Lose Millions in 2023

Australia, Finance

Australians are being encouraged to double-check payment details before paying an invoice received via email, following a surge in payment redirection scams.

Last year, Australians reported a staggering loss of $16.

ACCC Deputy Chair Catriona Lowe warned that scammers are becoming increasingly sophisticated and targeted in their approach to exploit consumers and businesses.

The scammers often impersonate genuine businesses to send altered invoices, redirecting payments to their own accounts.

The most commonly targeted sectors include real estate, legal, and construction, with recent scam reports involving car dealerships and travel companies.

The scam is difficult to detect, as scammers can either hack into email systems or impersonate business email addresses with minor changes.

ACCC Deputy Chair Catriona Lowe advised that verifying payment details by calling the business with independently sourced contact details is crucial.

Scammers can make invoices appear legitimate by using copied logos and Australian Business Numbers (ABNs).

The ACCC urges consumers to report any issues or suspicious activity, as they work with law enforcement to combat these scams.

In summary, Australians are losing millions to payment redirection scams, with scammers becoming increasingly sophisticated in exploiting consumers and businesses.

It is essential to take the time to verify payment details directly with the business and act quickly if something feels off.

Consumers can report compromised systems and suspicious activity to respective authorities to stay protected and help others.