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Aussies told to watch out for myGov ‘pay message’

Scammers are impersonating myGov and other government agencies.

myGov scam message.
Aussies are being warned about scams impersonating government agencies like myGov. (Source: ACMA/Getty)

Aussies are being told to stay alert for fake text messages, calls and emails from myGov and other government agencies.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) said government impersonation scams had become increasingly common, with scammers often posing as myGov, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), the Department of Home Affairs and ACMA itself.

These messages may ask you to urgently update your personal information, claim a refund or make a payment.

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One scam text message shared by ACMA claims to be sent by myGov and reads: “MyGov: You have a new pay message in your myGov inbox”.

This is then followed by a fake Centrelink link, which likely leads to a phishing website designed to steal your personal details.

“Emails and SMS might ask you to click on links to receive a refund, submit tax information or view correspondence,” ACMA said.

“These scams can appear trustworthy, with government logos and genuine contact details to trick you into believing they are real.”

If you receive a message claiming to be from myGov or another government agency, ACMA recommends visiting the official website or contacting them on a publicly listed number to validate the request.

It also urged Aussies to not provide their personal information or make payments over the phone, or click links in emails or text messages.

Tax scams on the rise

The government is also urging Aussies to remain vigilant for “sinister scammers” around tax time, with fraudsters often impersonating the ATO officials or claiming you are owed a refund.

The ATO has already received 19,843 reports of scams in the 2023-23 financial year, with more expected as taxpayers prepare to lodge their returns.

The ATO will never send you a link to log in to online services via text message or ask you to send personal information via social media, email or SMS.

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