Beware of refund scams, says Tax Commissioner

The Tax Commissioner today [Wed 10.8.2011] warned communities in Western Australia about a scam doing the rounds and encouraged victims of the scam to make contact with the ATO. He said the ATO is seeing the scam appearing mainly in Indigenous Communities, with victims told they will receive a “sorry payment from Kevin Rudd” or “money from Oprah Winfrey” in exchange for providing a payment of up to $800 and their personal details.

The Commissioner said the scam promoters, who sometimes have claimed to work for the ATO, use these details to lodge a fraudulent Education Tax Refund application in the victim’s name. The victim may then be issued with a refund cheque by the ATO. However, the refund is illegal and any money issued will have to be paid back, Mr D’Ascenzo said.