“It’s very concerning to see these scams evolving and becoming more sophisticated to steal even more money from unsuspecting people,” Ms Rickard said.

“While the proportion of reports involving a financial loss has dropped this year, the people who do lose money are losing bigger amounts.”

Many of the financial losses are from phone based scams which made up over $63.6 million (31 per cent) of the total money fleeced from Australians.

Scammers call or text people claiming to be from well known businesses in an attempt to steal personal information, a common thread that rose among scammers following Covid – 19 lockdowns.

“Scammers are pretending to be from companies such as Amazon or eBay and claiming large purchases have been made on the victim’s credit card. When they pretend to help you process a refund, they actually gain remote access to your computer and steal your personal and banking details,” Ms Rickard said.

“These scams are particularly concerning in our current climate, as many people are turning to online shopping because of the COVID-19 lockdowns,”

Individuals are being urged to report scams to Scamwatch to ensure all relevant agencies are aware of the scams and action can be taken to prevent them.

ACCC has already taken action against the Flubot scam that circulated earlier this year by raising awareness and sharing alleged scammer phone numbers with telecommunication companies.

Ms Rickard offered some helpful advice to avoid falling…

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