Reducing scam calls

Vocus, the telco industry, and the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), are continually working together to find new ways to identify, trace, and block scam calls, in order to prevent social and economic impact to Australians.

What are scam calls?

The majority of scam calls originate offshore, with the intention of getting you to provide personal information or payment over the phone. They can even lead to gaining remote access to your device, where information can be harvested or malware installed, enabling the scammers to make transactions.

How can I detect a scam call?

With scammers becoming more sophisticated, calls can sometimes appear to originate from a credible source such as a government agency or other well-known organisations. Go with your first instinct and never respond to a request for personal or account information, demand for immediate payment or remote access to a device. Although these calls can appear to be genuine, credible sources generally don’t ask for this type of information over the phone, so it is important to be vigilant. Scammers may also:

  • Claim that you have won a prize
  • Use a well-known logo or send a text message that appears to be legitimate
  • Call multiple times
  • Use a recorded message to urge you to return the call.

How can I protect myself from scam calls?

If something doesn’t look or sound right, or if something is too good to be true, it usually is. To help safeguard yourself, you should:

  • Block any callers on your phone that you suspect to be a scam call
  • If you don’t know the number, let the call go through to voicemail in the first instance. Then check if the number is from a credible source by searching for the organisation’s official number online before returning the call
  • Be careful where you share any personal information in an online setting such as social media
  • Avoid clicking on any unknown links in text messages.

How do I report a scam call?

You can contact Vocus directly or make a report to Scamwatch, a division of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

Where can I find more information?

In addition to Scamwatch, the following agencies provide helpful material on scam calls: