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AIC online survey shows growth in phone fraud

Media Release

20 March 2012

There are only two weeks left to help with the Australian Institute of Criminology’s 2012 online scam survey before it closes on March 31.

The AIC has released two Research in Practice reports during National Consumer Fraud  Week at www.aic.gov.au  using data from the 2011 survey, which shows scammers almost doubled their targeting of phone and SMS services to try and defraud Australians, while there was a slight decline in email attacks.

A second report shows that while the number of scams is increasing, people are waking up to this scourge and less people are responding.

The full analysis of the AIC 2011 online survey will be released in June.

AIC deputy director (Research) Rick Brown encouraged people to participate in the 2012 scam survey before it closes.

“Go to our home page www.aic.gov.au and take a couple of minutes to let us know what your experiences have been with scammers and fraudsters,” he said.

“Even if you haven’t been the victim of a scam, it would be good to hear whether you have received scam invitations, how you were contacted, and what you think of this problem.”

“This directly helps our research effort in this growing area of digital criminal behaviour, often perpetrated by organised criminal syndicates overseas.”

More than 1000 people responded to last year’s survey to help the AIC research this crime.

The AIC is part of the Australasian Consumer Fraud Taskforce, a coalition of Government and private organisations working to identify and analyse the changing types of consumer fraud and raise public awareness of the risks.  

AIC survey reflects the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) report released this week which also shows that awareness is increasing but the amounts defrauded are also on the rise – a reported $85 million in 2011. http://www.accc.gov.au/content/item.phtml?itemId=1039349&nodeId=aa94624b5f770975ee8b3f4a06d79765&fn=Targeting%20scams%20Report%202011.pdf

National Consumer Fraud week runs from the 19th to 25th of March.

For Comment:           Colin Campbell         0418 159 525