The Customer Owned Banking Association (COBA) has noted a recent spate of scam phone calls to account holders in the areas of south-west Victoria, including Warrnambool and District area. 

Claiming to be a ‘Fraud Department’ or ‘Monitoring Team’, the phone callers are targeting customers, many of them elderly and who are just beginning to emerge safely from their homes following the COVID-19 lockdown.

Many elderly residents often do not think twice about answering a call they see might be from a local or city number. These scammers use technology to make the call look like its local when in reality they are overseas.” 

COBA provides the following advice to consumers who suspect a scam phone call.

  1. Immediately hang up and call your banking institution. Customer owned banks will not ask you to verify bank details, or reveal PIN numbers and access codes in an unsolicited call.
  2. Don’t trust information provided by the scammer. For example, when the scammer volunteers a phone number to be contacted on. Call your banking institution directly on their main number.
  3. Keep your banking details safe at all times. Scams operate out of call centres and are highly organised activity. They know now to coerce people into providing information for the purpose of stealing funds from your accounts or make transactions.

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