Be wary of nbn scams

We often hear of various reports of scammers calling the seniors and elderly purporting to be from their telephone company, particularly Telstra, however, unfortunately, one of our clients’ parents were recently scammed by phone calls from who reported to be from the National Broadband Network (nbn). 

CyberGuru spoke about nbn scams at last Senior Safety Forum. Since this time, the nbn scams have become increasingly common, particularly amongst senior citizens.

As my client advised, “Dad has always been cautious and the type of person to always guide me to ‘always get two quotes’, ‘nothing is ‘urgent’, ‘do your research’ yet as they get older, things are becoming less clear. With the nbn activity he felt it was legit; he let them access his computer and provided his bank account details; although they were lucky it was quite the ordeal to cancel everything.  All they stole was Dad’s last bit of confidence managing household services.”

The scammer was claiming that there was an issue with their computer and sought to access this remotely that they could fix for them. As it turned out, the scammer was only seeking to install malicious software and attempt to take valuable information from them, and then charge them as well for this. Fortunately, as my client there was at the time, they stopped the scammer getting full access to the computer.

The client wanted to share a few valuable pieces of advice from their experience:

  1. “Trust your partner. Our experience was Dad felt the call was legit, whereas Mum felt it wasn’t ‘right’. She called me to help get Dad off the phone.”
  2. “Even if you feel it is a legit call, there is no urgency.  Never feel as though you need to act then and there.”

It is important to note that nbn will never contact you in this way. The nbn is wholesaler and does not deal with the general public. They do not invoice you, therefore cannot threaten to disconnect you. Secondly, they do not need any of your personal information, nor access to your computer.

If you have been affected in such way, we strongly recommending reporting any incidents to Scamwatch so that these can be investigated. If you are unsure if something is a scam or not, we are happy to offer our support and advice, so please feel free to contact us.