Aussies more likely to fall for scams despite suspicions

Report identified age groups most likely to fall victim to scams

Aussies more likely to fall for scams despite suspicions


By Roxanne Libatique

With Australia facing one cyberattack after another, Australians have become more suspicious – but not suspicious enough to protect themselves from scams, according to global payments technology company Visa's latest report.

The report – which surveyed 6,000 consumers in 18 markets worldwide – found that more than half of Australians (51%) claimed to be “very” or “extremely” knowledgeable about scams, with 78% being highly suspicious of requests to reset password and 63% wary of any notices regarding problems with an order, subscription, or account.

The respondents also exhibited a high level of discernment regarding the most common words or phrases employed by fraudsters, with 46% being mistrusting or suspicious of the most common fraud tactics and phrases compared to only 21% in Asia Pacific.

Australians fall for scams

Despite Australians' high level of discernment regarding the most common words or phrases employed by fraudsters, 30% fell victim to scams, slightly lower that than rate seen in the wider Asia-Pacific region (35%).

“Understanding the language of fraud is increasingly essential in our digital-first world. While our new study demonstrates that Australian consumers are savvy when it comes to spotting signs of fraud in our emails, texts, and messages, scammers have reached new heights of sophistication,” said Martyna Lazar, head of risk in Australia, New Zealand, and South Pacific, at Visa.

“Easter is a popular period for retail sales, which makes education and the proper discernment of the language of scams an integral part of consumer protection.”

Other key findings

While Australians feel confident in their vigilance, 81% were concerned that friends or family members might fall for potential scams, including email and text messages asking people to verify their account information, asking about overdrawn bank accounts, and notifying them about winning a gift card or product from an online shopping site.

The report further found that 72% of Australians reported seeking to ensure a communication is sent from a valid email address compared to 55% from Asia Pacific, while 64% would check that words are spelled correctly compared to 46% in the region.

Moreover, 94% of Australians believed “older people” are more likely to fall victim to online scams. However, global data showed that boomers are least likely to report even being a victim of a scam (29%) compared to Gen Zs (38%), millennials (39%), and Gen Xs (33%).

A recent report revealed that the total number of breaches in Australia in the second half of 2022 (H2 2022) rose by 26% from the same period in the previous year – in which 33% of the 40% breaches that affected over 5,000 Australians resulting from cyber security incidents.

Related Stories

Keep up with the latest news and events

Join our mailing list, it’s free!