The ATO has warned taxpayers about a spike in automated scam calls impersonating the ATO.
Scammers pretending to be from the ATO often claim that the taxpayer’s tax file number (TFN) has been suspended following suspected fraudulent activity. They may request the call recipient to transfer money, for example, into a holding account pending the outcome of legal action.
Since 1 January 2021, the ATO has received 638 reports of this scam, with 7 victims paying out nearly $118,000. Young people between 18–24 years have paid the most under this new tactic, with one person losing $36,000.
Taxpayers are reminded that the ATO does not suspend TFNs and will never request taxpayers to transfer money to personal bank accounts.