As tax time draws closer, the chance of being targeted by tax scammers increases. The Government expects to see heightened scam activity and new tax scams being circulated in the lead up and during tax time.
The Albanese Government is urging people to be alert to the behaviour of scammers and vigilant with their personal information.
In 2021-22 the ATO received over 20,000 scam reports from taxpayers and has already received 19,843 reports in 2022-23.
Impersonation scams are mostly commonly seen at tax time. Scammers will impersonate the ATO contacting individuals via a link to a fake myGov login page.
Ahead of tax time, we are warning the community about the common tricks of tax scammers use which include:
- posing as the ATO on social media and offer to help you with your tax and super questions. Unfortunately, they’re only looking to help themselves to your personal information.
- luring unsuspecting people with an offer of a “refund”. The only problem is that they’re fake. They usually impersonate the ATO to get your attention and then alert you to a ‘refund’ that’s waiting for you.
- trying to keep you engaged in a conversation for as long as possible to collect as much personal information from you as they can.
- using all types of methods to contact you including phone calls, a private message on social media, an email or text.
There is also a dedicated ATO team that monitors for scams and assists people who have fallen victim to scammers.
The top ways you can protect yourself against sinister scammers this tax time is to:
- remember that the ATO will never send you a link to login to their online services or ask you to send personal information via social media, email or SMS.
- report any suspicious contact claiming to be from the ATO to ReportScams@ato.gov.au and Scamwatch.
- delete the suspicious correspondence from your account or block the account on social media
- not respond if any contact seems suspicious. Instead, call 1800 008 540 to check if it was the ATO speaking with you.