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.
COMPANY NEWS by Telstra: Earlier in July, we talked about the results of our new SMS scam blocking feature, which in the preceeding three months since it was launched, had blocked over 185 million scam text messages.
GUEST OPINION by Perimeter 81: Our world is becoming more and more reliant on technology. It shapes how we work, how we communicate and how we complete our day to day tasks. Just as we need to know how to keep ourselves safe in the physical world, we also need to know how to stay safe online.
Changes to Australia’s Telecommunications Numbering Plan to further support scam reduction activities and improve the allocation of phone numbers, have been announced by the telecommunications industry regulator the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).
Australia is among the top ten recipients of Christmas-themed spam, according to Bitdefender Antispam Lab, but with only 1% of the total volume we're a lot better off than Ireland. Despite the emerald isle having a population that's less than a fifth of Australia's, it has been hit by 24% of the world's seasonal spam.
Australia’s competition watchdog, the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC), has issued an alert about potentially deadly solar batteries, and warning consumers to be aware that scammers may use news about a recall to elicit personal information or money from them.
The 24th Annual Technology Conference for Seniors was held on Thursday 10 November, 2022, and is now available to watch on YouTube - and the excellent information contained within is great for anyone of any age, with all links to the conference now available to watch below!
GUEST OPINION: As the biggest sales event of the year looms large, online crooks are starting to target eager consumers looking to save big on Black Friday.
Yes, the 24th Annual Technology Conference for Seniors is on again this Thursday, with a full day of top speakers, and plenty of info for seniors, future seniors, anyone with a senior in their life, plus great prizes to be won, with affordable ticket pricing - please read on!
Australians are being urged to learn how to spot a scam this national Scams Awareness Week after combined losses of over $2 billion reported last year to Scamwatch, the government and the financial sector.
Security vendor Bitdefender has bolstered the Bitdefender Mobile Security for Android product with the addition of real-time chat protection across WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Telegram and Discord.
Privacy, phishing and scams – oh my. Here’s what cybercriminals have been up to the past quarter.
GUEST RESEARCH: Norton Labs, the global research team at NortonLifeLock, today released its quarterly Consumer Cyber Safety Pulse Report, detailing the top consumer cybersecurity threats and insights from July through September 2022. Leveraging the company's global threat telemetry, the report includes an analysis of the most recent ways cybercriminals are putting privacy and security at risk. Norton telemetry for the month of September in Australia shows there were over 9.5 million blocks in that 30-day period, to deal with the level of threat.
Norton Labs analyzed recent attacks on top companies that were compromised through stolen login credentials. While these campaigns aimed to steal the information that could later be monetized against victims, the goal was to undermine the trusted technologies used to send automated emails, authentication codes and an entire company’s single sign-on.
“Cybercriminals have become experts at catching one-time codes used in most two-factor authentication and they know that by undermining the systems that send the codes, their efforts are even more effective,” said Jeff Nathan, Technical Director and Researcher, NortonLifeLock. “Consumers should use FIDO U2F tokens everywhere they can, as they aren’t susceptible to these phishing attacks.”
Cybercriminals are also turning to scam e-shops offering electronics, jewellery, clothes, and everything-in-between to lure victims. These sites often seem legitimate with polished storefronts, positive reviews, ties to social media accounts and more. However, once you place an order, you may receive a counterfeit item or nothing at all. According to the US Federal Trade Commission, there were 397,826 reports of online shopping fraud in 2021, totaling $392 million in losses. Norton Labs warns shoppers to watch out for prices that may be too good to be true, be wary of sites that request unusual payment-processing methods and to beware of social media ads and unsolicited messages. Using a URL lookup tool like Norton Safe Web can also let shoppers know if a site is already known to be a malicious/scam domain.
Another alarming discovery from Norton Labs is that 80 percent of websites share search terms with advertisers either accidentally or deliberately. Trackers can gain information from website visits, such as a user’s IP address, the website’s content, domain and more. This offers third parties a user’s search terms which can include sensitive information like medical concerns or family and legal situations. Advertisers may then use these characteristics to target ads in unexpected or potentially uncomfortable ways.
Behind the Data
From July through September 2022, Norton thwarted over 9.5 million threats, or around 300 thousand threats per day. Norton blocked:
For more information and Cyber Safety guidance, visit the Norton Internet Security Center.
About NortonLifeLock Inc.
NortonLifeLock Inc. (NASDAQ: NLOK) is a global leader in consumer Cyber Safety, protecting and empowering people to live their digital lives safely. We are the consumer’s trusted ally in an increasingly complex and connected world. Learn more about how we’re transforming Cyber Safety at www.NortonLifeLock.com.
Scams reported worldwide increased by 10.2%, from 266 in 2020 to 293 million reports in 2021, with the latest study by the Global Anti Scam Alliance revealing the money lost in scams grew by 15,7%, from $47.8 billion in 2020 to $55.3 billion in 2021.
Australian farmers and small businesses in rural and regional areas are urged to be cautious, particularly when buying heavy machinery, following a spike in scams targeting the agricultural sector this year.
There has been a a significant rise in “Hi Mum” scams in recent months prompting a warning for the Australian public to be wary of phone messages from a family member or friend claiming they need help.
The Australian Communications and Media Authority has warned unsuspecting consumers to beware of scammers impersonating family members using text or WhatsApp messages to try and steal money or financial information.
The state of competition for social media services and consumer concerns with the services in Australia is to come under scrutiny by the competition watchdog the ACCC as part of its Digital Platform Services inquiry.
Losses to imposter bond investment scams have nearly tripled in the first half of this year with consumers losing over $20 million to these sophisticated scams, according to the competition watchdog the ACCC.
Consumers have been warned about ongoing scams where scammers are impersonating well-known telecommunications or tech companies like Telstra, NBN Co and Microsoft.
The financial and emotional devastation caused by scams every year in Australia can be reduced if government, consumer groups and the private sector work together to make Australia a much harder target for scammers, according to ACCC chair Gina Cass-Gottlieb.
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