Sheila McHale

Sheila McHale

Minister for Disability Services; Tourism; Culture and the Arts; Consumer Protection

    Scammers try to capture bank information

    28/12/2005 12:00 AM

    Tens of thousands of Western Australians have been contacted by email trying to scam information about personal bank details.

    Acting Consumer Protection Minister Sheila McHale said ScamNet, the Department of Consumer Protection’s watchdog, had been alerted by concerned consumers who were receiving multiple copies of the email.

    “Anyone receiving an email from the National or Commonwealth Banks should leave it unopened and delete it immediately,” Ms McHale said.

    “Banks do not ask customers to respond to them by email. This is a scam aimed at finding consumers’ banking details and accessing their computer password details.”

    The Minister said these ‘fishing’ scams were designed to steal personal information by capturing consumers’ passwords and logon details when they clicked on the email link.

    Some emails also contained Trojans which captured keystroke information and were also designed to pass banking information to criminals.

    The Australian High Tech Crime Centre’s advice to computer users is:
    • never use a bank link provided in an email. Only use your bank’s computer link by typing the address into your browser;
    • never provide your personal banking details to anyone via an email. Your bank does not contact you this way and already has your banking passwords and personal details on file;
    • delete any suspicious emails from people you do not know;
    • these ‘fishing’ emails often contain grammatical errors, are not properly addressed or have typing errors, even though they contain what appears to be the correct bank logo; and
    • if you have responded to a ‘fishing’ email, contact your bank and the police.
    Ms McHale said the scam had been re-launched this Christmas period because people were in a ‘holiday mode’ and vulnerable and because banks were closed and uncontactable to verify the email.

    Minister's office: 9222 9211