Two in five Aussies to be targeted by cybercriminals this tax time

- June 18, 2019 2 MIN READ
  • Fifty-eight per cent of working Australian respondents agree they are more wary of cybercrime at tax time than at any other time of
  • One in five working Australian respondents (20 per cent) do not think it is safe to complete their tax return
  • Over two fifths (42 per cent) of working Australian respondents claim to have been targeted by ATO impersonation scams in the

A survey by leading cyber security platform Norton LifeLock has revealed while Australians are aware of the increase in cybercrime at this time of year, two in five will fall victim to a cybercriminal impersonating an organisation such as the Australian Tax Office.

Despite the heightened awareness of cyber security threats, Gen Z respondents continue to engage in risky behaviour such as sharing their tax returns over public Wi-Fi, with many believing cybercrime is something that happens to other people.

While cyber security risks can be mitigated and prevented by adopting cyber safe habits, these attacks can result in the leaking of personal information and financial loss.

Norton’s research suggests a large number of Australians are putting their personal and financial data at risk by engaging in unsafe behaviours such as not installing any security software on smartphones and sending sensitive information over unsecure networks.

“Tax time presents an enticing window of opportunity for cybercriminals with sensitive personal and business documents required for tax purposes being shared and stored across personal and business devices,” said Mark Gorrie, Senior Director and Security Expert – ANZ, Norton LifeLock.

Almost half (42 per cent) of working Australian respondents claim to have been targeted either by phone, email, or text by cyber criminals impersonating the ATO in the past and more than one in ten (13 per cent) of those targeted having lost personal data or money. Yet more than a third of Australians (36 per cent) still see cybercrime as something that only affects others.

“While it’s great to see many Australians are proactively choosing to protect their devices with security software, the end of the financial year should be a timely reminder for all Australians to be wary of online scams and ensure cyber smart practices are adopted when dealing with their finances online.”



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