• Hannah Phillips

More than $50,000 Scammed from Riverland Residents

With unscrupulous scammers continuing to target Riverland residents, police are distributing warning posters throughout the community.

Since 1 March there have been six reports to police made by residents in the area involving total losses of about $53,000.

Last month police in the Murray Mallee Local Service Area issued two separate public warnings about the activity of scammers.

Then, earlier this month, while police were visiting a local stores they became aware of another possible scam victim, and after making inquiries were able to track him down and prevent further losses.

In that case the elderly victim had been contacted by someone claiming his internet has been hacked and seeking that he buy iTunes cards as a way of tracking and identifying the hackers.

Unfortunately this is not the first time this ruse has been used to obtain money from trusting people who may be less knowledgeable about the use of this type of gift card.

As a result police have produced a warning poster which is being distributed throughout the Riverland community and placed in stores in a bid to prevent other people being taken advantage of.

The public are urged to be careful when dealing with uninvited contacts from people or businesses, whether it's over the phone, by mail, email, in person or on a social networking site.

Make independent checks before providing any money - and when in doubt ring the organisation yourself for confirmation.

Never give your bank details, or transfer money and never purchase iTunes cards for anyone requesting you to do so over the phone.

Please remember that no legitimate business will ask you to purchase iTunes cards as payment for goods or services.

Apple’s website clearly states iTunes gift cards can only be used to purchase goods and services on the iTunes Store, App Store, iBooks Store, or for an Apple Music membership.

Unfortunately scams are everywhere. They target people of all backgrounds, ages and income levels across Australia.

Some scams can be quite elaborate and the offenders can be very persuasive.

For more information about how to protect yourself, please visit the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s ScamWatch website.

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