New Scam Warning Issued For Coles, Telstra Loyalty Customers
Warnings have been released to Australians surrounding loyalty points being targeted through a new scam, including Qantas and Coles.
A scam alert was issued after the National Anti Scam Centre received 209 reports over four months, with a scam targeting Qantas Frequent Flyer, Telstra, and Coles loyalty customers.
A new scam is now targeting valuable points banked with some of these programs, Qantas and Coles included.
ACCC deputy chair Catriona Lowe claimed the “vast majority of reports” were related to fake messages to Telstra, Coles and Qantas customers, however Aussies must be aware any loyalty program could be affected.
“The National Anti-Scam Centre has contacted the companies that have been impersonated by scammers and is working with web host providers to have the fake websites taken down, to minimise harm to the community.”
“We are very concerned that Australians experiencing cost-of-living pressures may be more susceptible to these scams. Scammers are deliberately panicking consumers by claiming their points are expiring soon. We urge people to immediately delete or ignore any message regarding a loyalty program that contains a link.”
This warning comes as research from CHOICE indicates more Aussies are being targeted by scams than ever before, with governments wanting companies to crack down on fraud.
The latest survey found 9/10 individuals had received at least one suspected spam in the last year, with over 50% targeted every week.
Along with the increase, 88% of Aussies claim they’re getting harder to spot, with 84% becoming more cautious over fear for online finances.
Alan Kirkland, CHOICE CEO claimed survey takers want stronger scam protection, and for the government to force businesses to do more when it come to protecting consumers.
“Companies like banks, telcos and digital platforms like Meta are not doing enough to detect scams and prevent them from reaching people through their systems. Although there have been some positive steps in the right direction, what we really need are strong, enforceable rules that require businesses to protect people from scams.”
One thing he believes would go a long way is requiring banks to reimburse victims when their money is stolen by scammers. This was supported by 64% of survey takers.
Last year, Aussies lost a record of $3.1 billion, an 80% increase from 2021 ($2 billion).
Telstra unveiled a new ‘SCAM’ text line earlier this year, allowing customers to “dob in” SMS and MMS scams.
This initiative helped block around 23 million SMS scams per month since April 2022.