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How to avoid getting scammed ahead of the Christmas season
Jay-Jay & Flynny
Jay-Jay & Flynny

How to avoid getting scammed ahead of the Christmas season

The silly season is almost here, and that's not slowing down the scammers.
10 November 2022 12:34PM

While Christmas is the time for giving and merriment, it happens to be a time when more scammers come out of the woodwork to take your hard-earned money.

"I thought, 'Oh, he knows I don't live in Auckland. Okay, okay, this must be the bank.'" - Hear Kylie's full story about how she outwitted a scammer who claimed he was for Kiwibank, and how you can stop yourself from scams:

More FM listener Kylie thought she was taking a phone call from her bank earlier this week, but her phone was already giving her warning signs that a scammer might be on the other end of the line.

"Before I answered the call, it actually had come up because my phone's a smartphone and it actually came out as suspected spam. And I thought that was quite strange, but it looked like an 09 number, so it looked like it was an Auckland business."

Answering the phone, she heard a man at the other end of the line asking if she was Kylie, as they had some fraudulent activity on her account they wanted to talk to her about. They asked if they had her correct details, and if she knew about some transactions that had occurred from Amazon or Bookings.com.

"He said to me, 'if you're able to verify for me your access card number, I can look into your details for you further and work out what's actually happening.'"

Kylie was immediately resistant to giving her card details to him, but the scammer was insistent.

"He basically said, 'Look, you know, unfortunately, because you're not living in Auckland, this fraudulent activity does look like it's come from there. So we would need to proceed further with your access card details.' And I thought, 'oh, he knows I don't live in Auckland. Okay, okay, this must be the bank.'"

Luckily Kylie just avoided getting scammed when she caught out some bizarre behaviour and had the sense to check directly with Kiwibank herself to catch the guy in action.

New Zealand Bankers Association's CEO Roger Beaumont said Kylie did exactly what you should do when you suspect you're being scammed.

"Be suspicious. If you're getting an unexpected call from your bank and trying to rush you into doing things or telling, asking you questions, and there's a little part of your brain that season that just doesn't feel right. Trust your instincts."

"One thing the bank will never do - they'll never ever ask you for your password or any sort of security ID number that is only between you and your computer. So if they're asking for that critical security information, hang up immediately."

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