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Counties Manukau Police warn of IRD scam

Counties Manukau Police warn of IRD scam

Friday, 1 August 2014 - 4:28pm

Counties Manukau

Counties Manukau Police are warning residents of a phone scam involving Inland Revenue. Recent immigrants and business owners are targeted, with victims being told that the government of New Zealand wishes to gift them a tax refund for being a good citizen.

Phone calls are made from phone numbers that appear to be legit New Zealand numbers that could belong to Inland Revenue. However, Detective Sergeant Simon Beal of Counties Manukau Police says the phone calls are actually routed through a server from overseas, possibly India or Malaysia.

“Anyone who receives a call from Inland Revenue or any other government organisation should check on the department’s website for the official phone number,” says Detective Sergeant Beal. “If you’re unsure the call is legit, hang up and double check by calling the organisation back using the number provided online.”

The scammer asks the victim to prove that they are a good citizen of New Zealand by making a payment or donation to an overseas bank account via money transfer services such as Western Union or Moneygram before receiving their tax refund.

“This is not something that Inland Revenue would ever do and everyone asked to make payments through money transfer services should be wary,” says Detective Sergeant Beal.

Other recent scams include victims receiving phone calls warning that they would be arrested or deported if they did not make an Inland Revenue payment quickly. Additionally, some victims have been told to buy Prezzy Cards, load money onto them and disclose their security numbers to the scammer over the phone.

“Residents should be wary of any unknown person who calls and asks for money. Inland Revenue will never knock on your door or call you asking for credit card details. Never give credit card details over the phone and call Police if you’re suspicious of someone who has called or visited you,” says Detective Sergeant Beal.

People throughout the Counties Manukau District and particularly East Auckland have been targeted.

Anyone who has been a victim of this scam or is contacted by a scammer should call Police on 09 261 1300.


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