Immigrating to Australia may seem daunting, especially with the number of fraudsters around these days. Australia’s Department of Immigration and Citizenship has warned people that these scams come in all sorts of guises and often play on the victim’s fear of being deported.
One of the recent scams, for example, involves people receiving a call from someone who allegedly works from an Australian department. The person will claim that there is a problem with your “CISA card” (which stands for Citizenship and Immigration Services Alien and doesn’t even exist) and request money upfront or risk deportation.
If you receive a call out of the blue about your visa, then it should already be a red flag. If the person demands upfront payments, then it is very likely a scammer. Don’t feel pressure just because the person on the phone has your details, such as your nationality, name, address or any information pertaining to your visa status.
Never give your personal information away as the scammer could use your information to commit further identity fraud. Don’t send money via wire transfer, money order or any other type of internet payment method. If you have already been contacted by a suspected scammer, then you can report the incident to the Immigration Dob-In Line on 1800 009 623.
If you have recently immigrated to Australia, then you should also be aware of other common scams, such as credit card skimming. This is the illegal copying of information from the magnetic strip of an ATM card or a credit card. Be sure to ask for your card back immediately if a shop assistant needs to swipe your card out of site and never share your credit card PIN.