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Wednesday, 11 March 2020 09:24

NBN Co warns against scams Featured

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NBN Co has warned that scammers are increasing their efforts to use the NBN brand to steal people’s personal or financial details, with over 180,000 people contacting the builder of the National Broadband Network to report a scam over the six months to December 2019.

Approximately 31% of those calls over the six months came from residents in NSW, 28% from Victoria and 19% from Queensland, with NBNCo’s contact centre receiving an average of 643 enquires a week on suspected scam calls between July and December 2019.

Many contacted residents reported they received an automated call from ‘Nicole at nbn’ with a warning that their services would be disconnected if they didn’t ‘press 1' to speak to a technician - while other popular scams designed to defraud the community include requests to remotely access a computer or laptop to fix an issue with the connection, or help “set -up” or activate services.

NBN Co’s Chief Security Officer, Darren Kane, said the company remains focused on scams prevention and helping people to identify and avoid scammers.

“While we do have a few people named Nicole working at NBN Co, they – or any of our employee’s - are not calling customers and threatening to disconnect services. In fact, nbn will never call and ask to access your computer or advise that you’re going to be disconnected.

“It is important that we set the record straight when it comes to scams so that Australians can identify and protect themselves from being duped by these professional criminals.

“As NBN Co is a wholesaler, we will never contact residents or businesses to sell phone or internet services. We will never make unsolicited calls or door knock for the purposes of seeking access to people’s computer, threaten to disconnect your services or request personal or financial details.

“Your phone and internet provider will always be the first point of contact when it comes to making the switch to the nbn network, so if you’re in doubt, hang up and contact your provider to verify the call.”

NBN Co has issued its top tips for protecting against scammers including:

  • Visit NBN Co’s website at www.nbn.com.au/scamadvice for information on how to identify and avoid potential scammers or for advice if you suspect you have been scammed.
  • Remember NBN Co is a wholesaler, which means it does not sell phone or internet services directly to the public. People need to contact their preferred phone and internet provider in order to make the switch.
  • Never give an unsolicited caller remote access to your computer or devices via the installation of programs, such as Team Viewer.
  • NBN Co does not make automated calls, such as robocalls, to advise of disconnections to nbn or existing copper phone line services. Do not engage with these calls.
  • Do not share your financial information (i.e. bank, credit card or gift card details) or personal details with an unsolicited caller or door knockers trying to seek payment for an nbn service.
  • If in doubt, hang up and call your retail service provider on their official customer service centre number to check if the call is legitimate. Do not use contact details supplied by the caller.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired and is a "volunteer" writer for iTWire. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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