HUNTER VALLEY NEWS COLUMN 19 NOVEMBER 2014

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is warning the public that a recent spate of hoax emails have been sent out advising people they are entitled to $400.

The email claims that ACCC action against a scammer resulted in an order to pay $195,000. It goes on to state that individuals are entitled to $400 and need to ring a +009180133XXXXX number.

This is clearly a fake email that relies upon the public trust in the organisation it pretends to represent. It is yet another variation of the reclaim scam that sees scammers claim to represent the Government, a bank or some other trusted organisation and offer refunds, grants or other monies.

If you are contacted out of the blue and told that you are entitled to money in exchange for an upfront fee, delete it – if you hand over your money, it’s gone.

The email attempts to capitalise on the legitimate ACCC web address but it is in fact a gmail address "ACCC GOV_AU" <acccgovau@gmail.com>. Do not respond to this link or the telephone number.

Remember, government departments will never contact you asking you to pay money upfront in order to claim a fee or rebate.

Never send money or give your financial details to someone you don’t know and trust – it’s
rare to recover money from a scammer.

If you think you have provided your bank account or credit card details to a scammer, contact your bank or financial institution immediately.

Consumers can find out about the latest scams by visiting www.scamwatch.gov.au

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Nominations are still open for the NSW/ACT Young Achiever Awards, with less than 1 month to go till nominations close on Thursday 4th December, nominate a young achiever today!

The NSW/ACT Young Achiever Awards give young people a chance to share their stories and network with others in the community.

The Young Achiever Awards will recognise 7 fantastic young role models within several fields of endeavour including, leadership and innovation, science leadership, community service, arts and fashion, environment and sustainability, indigenous achievement and career achievement.    Nominating is easy – visit  http://www.awardsaustralia.com/appl/nomination.php?program=young-achiever-awards&state=nsw 

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I am always keen to assist with issues or questions relating to Federal Government departments or put you in contact with someone who can, so please ring, write, visit the website or call in.

Why not go the extra step by following me on my Facebook page “Joel Fitzgibbon” or on Twitter and type in the search bar “fitzhunter”. Or by regularly checking my website at www.joelfitzgibbon.com or you can even sign up to my E-Newsletter.

To contact the office, phone 1300 301 753, visit www.joelfitzgibbon.com or by post 3 Edward Street, (PO Box 526) Cessnock, 2325.


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