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Another Grubby ATO Scam

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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.)

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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.

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The latest on the grubby ATO scam.

How could anyone with any ethics work for these grubs?

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I guess you are referring to accent?

The ATO like most Govt departments is an equal opportunity employer, or something like that. It’s a given Australians speak English with a multitude of different accents. It can be challenging. I’m patient. I also might have had the same ATO service rep on a call earlier this week. We got the job done. (This may help to ensure the goat curry from the local is equally authentic?)

Across several G-Grandparents, Jordies, Scots who spoke little English natively, Irish, some one from near Manchester and a couple from the wild south west of Devon, the problem of understanding each other is not a recent challenge here.

Important Note:
I too would tend to be sceptical of any supposed phone call from the ATO without some prior arranged contact.

Of audits and the like, once you enter the ATO business portal or individual ATO site through MyGov any key correspondence is being delivered through those sites. It’s also where once you log in any outstanding demands for documents or payments can be accessed directly. It may be registering as appropriate is a good and useful protection.

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Another version of the ATO scam.

These scumbags are unbelivable.

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Should they visit me I will proudly point out that they are on camera and the ‘tape’ will be duly forwarded to the police and ATO, best done from behind locked security doors.

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Another article regarding the ATO now even treating the Federal Parliament with contempt.

discuss the affairs of individuals

Potentially misleading text though as someone could think that someone’s tax affairs were discussed in parliament, when this is not the case.

The other side of the coin is that if he is evasive and unresponsive in his answers then he will be accused of being evasive and unresponsive (and that may be contempt of parliament).

At the end of the day, the public’s right to know - and the parliament’s right to scrutinise - what the hell is going on in the ATO meant that in my opinion what he said is OK.