SCAM WARNING: Stan Dennis has been around the block and he knows a scam when he hears one.
SCAM WARNING: Stan Dennis has been around the block and he knows a scam when he hears one. Tessa Mapstone

Online, phone and mail scams "will only escalate"

MORE than 100,000 people across Australia reported being the targets of scams last year, equating to a financial loss of $84 million.

The South Burnett has been the target of numerous scams and Kingaroy Police Senior Sergeant Duane Frank said the problem would only escalate.

"These people prey on the vulnerable and the elderly. Don't fall for the trap," Snr Sgt Frank said.

"Coming to the police after you've had your bank drained, it's going to be nearly impossible for them or the banks to do anything.

"Scams will continue, it's not going to stop and people just need to be vigilant and very guarded with what they reply to."

Of those targeted, females and individuals older than 65 reported more scam incidents.

The phone was the most popular avenue for scammers, with email and the internet coming in close behind.

Snr Sgt Frank said he had noticed an increase in scams with the popularity of technology.

"I think it's probably something that is going to increase, especially with technological advances," Snr Sgt Frank said.

"Everyone's got a mobile phone, everyone's got access to email and everyone's on the internet these days.

"We've got all this modern technology that is being used for bad things."

Snr Sgt Frank said while it was happening all throughout Queensland, it was also a nationwide and international issue.

He said the most popular scams had involved fake notifications from police or government organisations, banks, email contacts, the lottery and deceased estates.

"The majority of these scams are coming from overseas destinations so it's almost impossible for state police to track down where it's coming from," he said.

"We do have people who unfortunately believe it's true and fall for the trap.

"If people are unsure or get a gut feeling, don't reply."

South Burnett


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