Scam spike in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
- 50 consumers lost over $161,000 to scams in the last 12 months
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples invited to share their experience with scams, buying goods and services, and renting
- Survey closes 30 June 2023 with a $200 cost of living gift card up for grabs
WA ScamNet has seen an increase in reports of scams affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Western Australia (WA) since 2019. In the last 12 months, 50 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples reported losses of $161,772 to scams to ScamNet.
Online shopping scams were the highest reported category, with one man from Collie losing $3,285 to a shipping container scam.
Hacking and investment scams were the highest losses reported, with one woman from Leederville losing over $63,000 to a multi-layered bitcoin investment scam.
Many more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are expected to have fallen victim to scams, as an Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) survey indicates only 13 per cent of scam losses are reported to regulators.
To help combat scams and understand issues faced by Aboriginal consumers buying goods and services such as a motor vehicle, or with renting, Consumer Protection has launched the Aboriginal Consumers Count Survey (ACCS) which invites Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples aged 16 and over in Western Australia (WA) to share their experiences.
The survey will help Consumer Protection identify unlawful conduct by traders, help develop education and awareness campaigns to empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to know their consumer rights, and what to do when things go wrong, and how to protect themselves from scams.
Have your say and take the survey on the Consumer Protection website at www.dmirs.wa.gov.au/accs. All participants who complete the survey will go into the draw to win one of nine $200 cost of living gift cards. The survey closes 30 June 2023.
For further information and advice, including on scams, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in WA can contact Consumer Protection or ScamNet by emailing email@example.com or by calling 1300 30 40 54.
Media Contact: Jasmine Sidhu, (08) 6552 9233 / 0429 078 791 / firstname.lastname@example.org
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