Not everyone online is who they say they are. Vigilance will help protect your private details and bank funds.

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Have you ever received a message saying you have to pay a toll for a trip you’ve never taken, or to organise delivery of a parcel you weren’t expecting? 

If so, you’ve been targetted by cybercriminals using a technique called “phishing”. 

Phishing gets its name because the criminals digitally “fish” for information they can steal from you and use to their advantage. 

Phishing scams come in many forms and can be delivered by phone message, text, social media or email.

Typically, the sender pretends to represent a company that you may know and trust – a bank or a big brand such as Australia Post or Federal Express. 

A text message may ask you to follow a link, which then takes you to a website that will infect your computer with a virus, or a phone caller will ask for details such as your bank account number and password and then use them to clean out your account. 

Legitimate businesses don’t operate this way. 

Phishing is one of the main scams practised by cybercriminals, and it can be very convincing. 

To help you understand the threats, the Australian Federal Police and National Seniors Australia have joined forces to produce videos outlining the most common scams. You can view them here.

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