CHOICE membership

Another Grubby ATO Scam


Another grubby ATO scam which really goes over the top to fool their victims.


Quite sophisticated - sounds as if her phone had already been completely compromised (which means she is lucky that she only lost what she did) - but um “requested $1,500 in the form of a Google Play card”? Surely that should have rung alarm bells? You can say plenty of bad things about the ATO but they don’t demand or accept payment in random “phone cards” - and there have been notices about that in supermarkets and elsewhere for many months if not years.


Agree. Even if the call sounded genuine, this should have immediately identified that it was a fraud.

One should only pay the ATO using their approved payment methods: See…

(Note: Payment by Google Pay Cards, Western Union Transfer, Apple Cards etc, is not one of them).

Maybe the ATO should place a note on all issued notices (such as Notices of Assessment) the approved forms of payment and that others such as gift cards are not used and indicate a scam if payment is requested using such methods… They should also say that any payment should only used the methods outlined on the Notice or website.


Having just been audited in the past couple of months, I can well remember that awful panicked feeling. It makes it hard to concentrate, first thought in the morning, last thought at night. I can well understand this lady’s reaction.


Wouldn’t they notify in writing of an audit?

If anyone called me up to declare that they are auditing me, I would hang up on them as an unauthenticated caller.


When we were in business, we had 2 audits in the 1990’s, and the ATO phoned me on both occassions to advise of the audit and the date and time.

Both were triggered by fasle complaints made by former dishonest employees.

Fortunately we were squeaky clean.


Yes they do, but the OP ‘news’ article seems to indicate that the scammers are now saying that the registered ATO post hasn’t been collected and why they are calling. They are cottoning on to media from the ATO to try and keep one step ahead.


Just entertaining the scammers for a moment … that isn’t exactly how registered post works. If it is delivered then you will know it and the ATO will know it. If it isn’t delivered, that isn’t your problem - it’s between the ATO and AusPost. (I suppose the situation could arise where you are anticipating bad stuff from the ATO and hence decline to accept delivery of registered post, but in that situation you are hardly likely to fall for an ATO phone scam.)


The notification was in writing, all details were correct and could have only been supplied to the Tax Dept. by particular organization. However, the contact person was Indian whom I had trouble understanding. All things considered, I was still feeling rather rattled. I contacted an accountant and he pursued the matter for me.