There has been an increase in tax scamming phone calls and emails in the past few weeks, and it shows no sign of slowing. The scammers are becoming more difficult to identity and are even redirecting their overseas phones through local numbers.
The best defence against scammers is to understand that:
• The ATO would NEVER issue a warrant for your arrest
• The ATO would NEVER ask for payment over the phone
• The ATO would NEVER ask for iTunes vouchers – or similar – as payment.
Even if the caller claims to have spoken to your tax agent; never give your details over the phone, hang up and call your tax agent directly and ask them if you do have a debt.
So what other precautions can you take to avoid being scammed? Please search in Google for: ATO ‘Verify or report a scam’ page on the ATO website and read through; don’t forget to share this page with your family / friends. Yes, scams are so frequent that the ATO has a team dedicated to deal with them! If someone calls and claim that you have a tax debt, hang up; it’s a scam. Call the ATO immediately if you have any doubts on 1800 008 540 (ATO impersonation scam hotline) Call this number if you think you may have fallen victim to an ATO impersonation scam.