SO far this year Scamwatch has received at least 263 reports of scams relating to ‘farms’ or ‘machinery that could be used on farms’ with reported losses totalling more than $1.116 million.

Not all of these scams relate to machinery, with some involving the purchase of cattle, sheep and fodder.

The statistics show that people in the rural sector are not immune to being caught out by fraudsters who cost Australian consumers, businesses, and the economy hundreds of millions of dollars each year and cause serious emotional harm to victims and their families.

Up until the end of September this year, Scamwatch had received more than 226,000 reports of scams that have fleeced Australians of more than $222 million.

And that’s only the ones that have been reported. It is thought that around one-third of people who are scammed never tell anyone because they feel shame or embarrassment about what has happened, so the true numbers are probably much higher.

In this Scams Awareness Week (November 8-12) the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is calling on everyone to be alert to scam activity, report any scams and share their scam stories to raise awareness, reduce stigma and help people recognise a scam sooner, or prevent scams from happening in the first place.

Case study examples of farm-related scams

Tractor advertisement on classifieds website – reported losses of $7900:

“On 28th November 2020 I was on Facebook Marketplace. I came across an…

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