Based on your report it looks like you may have been affected by a survey, prize or delivery scam. This can happen through text message or email. Take a look at the information below for advice on what steps you should take to stay safe.
HOW THIS SCAM WORKS AND WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE:
If you’ve received a text message or email claiming you’ve been selected to take part in a survey, receive a prize, confirm a pending parcel delivery or are eligible for a new phone, you might be the victim of a scam.
Netsafe has received many complaints about survey, prize and delivery scams that claim to have come from well-known organisations such as Countdown, NZ Post, DHL, or even phone companies such as Vodafone or Spark.
These scams try to trick people into visiting scam websites that can ask for your payment details or even download malicious apps that steal your information.
If you're unsure if the message has come from a scammer or not, our advice is to contact the company the message claims to have come from using their publicly listed contact information.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU’VE RECEIVED THIS SCAM BY TEXT MESSAGE:
- Don’t respond to the message, and don’t open any links that might be included.
- If the message names an organisation in New Zealand, and if you believe it could be genuine, contact them on their publicly listed phone number to ask if the message was from them.
- If the message isn't genuine, check if your mobile phone has features that allow you to block specific phone numbers from sending you text messages.
You can check with your phone provider to see if your model of mobile phone supports this blocking feature.
- Report these texts to the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) by forwarding it to 7726. The DIA has the mandate to regulate spam in NZ.
- If it asked you to download an app, please report this to the CERT NZ here.
- Delete the scam text message.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU'VE FOLLOWED THE LINK AND DOWNLOADED THE APP
CERT NZ, a Government cyber-security organisation have shared advice here for what you can do if you've received this scam message. They advise people to complete a factory reset of your device as soon as possible. This will delete any data on your phone and we do not recommend you back up your phone after installing the app. You will also need to change the passwords to all of your online accounts and contact your bank if you use internet banking. If you've received this scam message please also report it to the CERT NZ here.
This Identity Theft Checklist from the Department of Internal Affairs is a helpful guide on what could happen with your information. If you believe you were exposed to identity theft, we suggest you contact iDCare as they can provide free help and support.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU’VE RECEIVED THIS SCAM BY EMAIL:
- Don’t respond to the email, and don’t click on any links that might be included.
- If the email names an organisation in New Zealand, and if you believe it could be genuine, contact them on their publicly listed phone number to ask if the message was from them.
- Block the scammers email address. The simplest way to do this is to mark the email as junk mail.
When an email is marked as junk mail, your email filter will learn to redirect emails from that scammers email address away from your inbox.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU’VE CLICKED ON THE LINK IN AN EMAIL:
- Close the page the scam message lead you to.
- Check for malware on the device you were using at the time. Malware is malicious software such as a computer virus. You can use a free online scanner to look for threats on your computer.
- As an independent not-for-profit, Netsafe can’t recommend a particular product but we have listed some options here from well-known, reputable companies that are suitable for home computers.
For PC:ESET online scanner or Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool. After this scan has been completed, you can run Malwarebytes Anti-Malware free edition.
For Mac: Bitdefender Antivirus for MAC or ESET Cyber Security for Mac or AVG Antivirus for Mac are also good alternatives.
- If you’ve opened the link on your mobile phone you can contact your phone company for advice on how to check for and remove malware. Please be aware that this can include ‘factory resetting’ the device which will delete everything you have saved (including photos).
WHAT TO DO IF YOU’VE SHARED PRIVATE INFORMATION OR BANK DETAILS:
- If you have shared any bank account information you should report the incident to your bank immediately. This includes credit card information.
- If you have sent money using your credit card you can speak to your bank about applying for a charge back.
If you have sent money via an online money transfer platform (such as Bitcoin) the transaction is likely untraceable, and you may not be able to get your money back.
- If you have replied to the email with any sensitive personal information, this Identity Theft Checklistis a helpful guide on what could happen with your information. If you believe you may have been exposed to identity theft, we suggest you contact iDCare as they provide free help and support.
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