24 November 2023

Government welcomes Scam Safe Accord

The new Scam Safe Accord announced by the Australian Banking Association (ABA) and the Customer Owned Banking Association (COBA) today is another important step in Australia’s united battle against the scammer scourge.

Over the last 18 months, the Albanese Government has been working on a comprehensive plan to take on scammers from every angle. We are working with telecommunications companies to block scam text messages and are preparing new industry codes. We also delivered an $86.5 million package in the last Budget headlined by the establishment of a new, world‑leading National Anti‑Scams Centre.

The NASC is already disrupting scams in collaboration with industry and law enforcement, while thousands of investment scam and phishing websites have been removed in a blitz by ASIC’s new website takedown service.

The Scam Safe Accord announced by the ABA and COBA complements the Government’s work, and reflects the way the banking sector has proactively stepped up their anti‑scam efforts in response to the growing threat to Australians.

The Accord includes six priority initiatives to make banking safer for Australian consumers. The initiatives include an expansion of confirmation of payee, increased warnings and payment delays for higher risk transactions, and strengthened intelligence and data sharing across the sector.

This commitment to action from the banking sector is a significant and proactive step up, increasing protections for all Australians no which of these banks you are with.

At the same time, the Government is working on tough new industry codes for banks, telcos and digital platforms, which will set clear, robust obligations to protect Australians. This sits alongside the work on cybersecurity and information privacy.

We look forward to ongoing engagement between the banking sector and Government to protect Australians from scams.

Quotes attributable to the Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Financial Services, Stephen Jones:

“Australians finally have a Government that is fighting back against scams after being left to fend for themselves for years.

“We delivered on our election commitment to establish a National Anti‑Scam Centre and we are glad to see the banking industry taking their own proactive steps.

“Because of the work being done across government and industry, Australians are more aware and more likely to report scam activity.

“Our new National Anti‑Scams Centre is disrupting new scams every day, and now this accord adds to that momentum."