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Wednesday, 25 January 2023 11:20

Optus impersonation scams: ACMA alert Featured

By Gordon Peters

Scammers are continuing to impersonate the Optus brand to scam Australians, according to the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) which has warned that it is receiving reports of convincing-looking email scams using Optus branding.

ACMA says these scams will often mention the recent Optus data breach and ask you to click on a link to update or confirm your details for ‘security reasons’ - and other examples might look like a payment reminder asking you to click on a link to pay a fake outstanding bill or update your payment method.

“Common among all of these scam messages is a sense of urgency – that if you do not act quickly, your account will be closed or suspended, or your service disconnected,” says ACMA, adding that the messages may also contain typos and/or sender email addresses that are not related to Optus.

“Do not click on any links in these messages. These scams are designed to steal your personal and financial information. Optus advise that they will never ask for your personal or sensitive information via email or messages,” warns ACMA.

“If you’re unsure if a message is legitimate, always contact Optus via their publicly available contact details rather than the details provided in a message. There is no indication any of these scam messages are using data from the recent Optus breach.”

ACMA suggests that you learn how to protect yourself from scams by visiting scamwatch.gov.au - and if you are concerned that your identity has been compromised or you have been a victim of a scam, contact your bank immediately and call IDCARE on 1800 595 160.

“If your identity has been stolen, you can apply for a Commonwealth Victims' Certificate and “if you believe you are victim of a cybercrime, visit ReportCyber, or “if you think you may be affected by the recent Optus data breach, contact Optus customer service on 133 937.”

ACMA also advises you should also:

  • secure and monitor your devices and accounts for unusual activity, and ensure they have the latest security updates
  • enable multi factor authentication for all accounts.

ACMA recommends that if you need assistance with these steps, visit cyber.gov.au.

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