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Aussies urged to ‘watch out’ for $1,998 tax return text

Aussies who receive the message have been urged to ignore it.

A composite image of a crowd of people walking on a busy street and a copy of the scam text message claiming the recipient has a tax return.
Aussies have been warned about a new tax time text message scam doing the rounds. (Source: Scamwatch / Getty)

Aussies who have received a text message claiming they have a $1,998 tax refund have been warned not to click on the link.

The text message, which claims to be from myGov, is actually a scam, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) Scamwatch said.

“Watch out for messages appearing to be from myGov claiming your tax return has been processed. These are scam messages. Ignore, delete, and block,” Scamwatch said.

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The text claims the recipient is owed a large tax return and encourages them to click on a link to “update” their details.

Following through with the request would actually allow scammers to steal your personal information.

When will I get my tax return?

If you’re lodging your tax return yourself, you will want to wait until the end of July to avoid any mistakes.

This is because your employer has until July 31 to provide the ATO with your year-to-date salary, super contributions and PAYG details.

When you log into your MyGov account, your statement will be marked as “tax ready” once this information has been received.

The same goes for information from government agencies like Centrelink, health funds and banks: they have until July 31 to update the ATO.

Once your tax return has been lodged it can take up to two weeks to process if you have done it online. If you lodged your tax return on paper, it can take up to 10 weeks to process.

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will not calculate your tax return for you, so any text, call or email claiming you have a tax return ready for you is likely a scam and should be ignored.

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