Security Market Segment LS
Wednesday, 06 July 2022 23:13

Scam losses to culturally diverse communities, people with disability and Indigenous Australians almost doubled in 2021: Scamwatch Featured

By Staff Writer

Scammers stole over $66 million last year from Indigenous Australians, people who identified as culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) and people with disability, according to new data from the ACCC’s annual Targeting Scams report.

“Scammers generally cast their nets very wide, but some specifically target groups such as Indigenous Australians and CALD communities,” Australian Competition and Consumer Commission deputy chair Delia Rickard said.

“Unfortunately, we saw some vulnerable members of the community lose significantly more money to scams last year.”

In 2021, the ACCC says Scamwatch received 4,958 reports from Indigenous Australians, with $4.8 million in losses – representing a 43% increase in reports and 142% increase in losses since 2020.

Younger Indigenous Australians lost more money than older Indigenous Australians, which is a reverse of the overall trend of financial losses to scams increasing with age.

The most financially damaging scams for Indigenous communities were investment scams, followed by phishing scams and romance scams.

The report shows that scams impacting CALD communities made up 5% of all reports to Scamwatch, and almost 13% of the total losses. Members of CALD communities reported $42 million in losses, which is an 88% increase compared to 2020.

The most financially damaging scams for CALD communities were investment scams, followed by romance scams and scams involving threats to life, arrest or other – and members of CALD communities who reported a financial loss to Scamwatch on average lost $1,200, compared to an average loss of $845 for all people.

The main financial losses were incurred through investment scams in the form of ponzi scams and pyramid scheme apps such as Hope Business and Wonderful World. These scams impacted younger people in CALD communities more than any other group.

According to the ACCC, people from CALD communities were also over-represented in financial losses due to scams involving threats to life, arrest and other, and identity theft.

“The Australian Government will never threaten you with immediate arrest. Always stop to consider who you might be dealing with, and if you’re not sure if the call is legitimate, hang up and call the organisation directly using contact details you independently source,” Rickard said.

“If you think scammers might have gained access to your personal information, contact your bank immediately.”

The report also reveals that people who identified as having a disability made 15,387 reports to Scamwatch last year and lost more than $19.6 million to scams - a 104 per cent increase in reports and 102 per cent increase in financial losses compared to 2020.

“There was record amounts of scam disruption last year across the public and private sectors, but scammers are unscrupulous and clearly more needs to be done,” Rickard said.

“As vulnerable consumers can be difficult to reach through traditional channels, we also encourage the wider community to assist in sharing warnings about scams.”

The ACCC notes that it regularly engages in Indigenous outreach programs and shares scam warnings on the Your Rights Mob Facebook page.

Consumers can follow @scamwatch_gov on Twitter and subscribe to Scamwatch radar alerts.

The ACCC’s Little Black Book of Scams is available in ten languages to help the community understand and avoid scams.

More information on scams is available on the Scamwatch website, including how to make a report and where to get help.

Read 1451 times

Please join our community here and become a VIP.

Subscribe to ITWIRE UPDATE Newsletter here
JOIN our iTWireTV our YouTube Community here


Thoughtworks presents XConf Australia, back in-person in three cities, bringing together people who care deeply about software and its impact on the world.

In its fifth year, XConf is our annual technology event created by technologists for technologists.

Participate in a robust agenda of talks as local thought leaders and Thoughtworks technologists share first-hand experiences and exchange new ways to empower teams, deliver quality software and drive innovation for responsible tech.

Explore how at Thoughtworks, we are making tech better, together.

Tickets are now available and all proceeds will be donated to Indigitek, a not-for-profit organisation that aims to create technology employment pathways for First Nations Peoples.

Click the button below to register and get your ticket for the Melbourne, Sydney or Brisbane event



It's all about Webinars.

Marketing budgets are now focused on Webinars combined with Lead Generation.

If you wish to promote a Webinar we recommend at least a 3 to 4 week campaign prior to your event.

The iTWire campaign will include extensive adverts on our News Site and prominent Newsletter promotion and Promotional News & Editorial. Plus a video interview of the key speaker on iTWire TV which will be used in Promotional Posts on the iTWire Home Page.

Now we are coming out of Lockdown iTWire will be focussed to assisting with your webinars and campaigns and assistance via part payments and extended terms, a Webinar Business Booster Pack and other supportive programs. We can also create your adverts and written content plus coordinate your video interview.

We look forward to discussing your campaign goals with you. Please click the button below.


Share News tips for the iTWire Journalists? Your tip will be anonymous




Guest Opinion

Guest Reviews

Guest Research

Guest Research & Case Studies

Channel News