Story image

Think the govt has a big tax refund for you? Think again

21 Jul 2018

Sorry to be the party pooper but it may be time to get your toes in line and cancel that ASOS order you were going to cover with your tax refund.

The Inland Revenue Department (IRD) has revealed there is currently a ‘sophisticated’ email scam appearing in inboxes around the country that at first glance appears to be from Inland Revenue. But it’s not, they just want your credit card details.

According to Inland Revenue, the email usually claims that the recipient is due a large tax refund and then asks them to click on a link to another website where their money can supposedly be claimed. You know the type.

But as aforementioned, it is more sophisticated than the usual and Inland Revenue chief information security officer Doug Hammond says it actually looks quite convincing – apart from a few important details that gives the game away.

“Firstly look where the email is from. If it doesn’t come from an address that ends with ird.govt.nz then be very suspicious,” says Hammond.

“Secondly look at the link where they are trying to direct people to claim the refund. Hover over the link with your mouse and make sure the web address is for a real Inland Revenue website.”

It may sound obvious but just so it’s clear, Hammond says if it isn’t a real Inland Revenue website, then don’t click on it.

“We send out emails all the time but customers should be aware what a fraudulent one looks like.”

Hammond says this particular scam has been particularly prevalent around the country with the government department having received more than 700 notification about it over the past week.

“The same scammers look to be making multiple attempts to lure unsuspecting customers and have been using the same messaging sent from a number of email addresses,” Hammond says.

“We would never send anyone an email with a hyperlink to a webpage that asks you to submit your personal information so be vigilant about any correspondence with those instructions.”

If you have clicked on the form and submitted any personal or credit card data (*facepalm*) then Hammond stresses to contact your bank immediately. Likewise, if you receive one of these phishing emails or something similar, notify Inland Revenue at phishing@ird.govt.nz.

Samsung & Trade Me offer AI-powered shopping
The smartphone camera & AI-powered tech, Trade Me says, is a ‘glimpse into the future of shopping’.
Neill Blomkamp's 'Conviction' is a prequel to BioWare's Anthem
You may remember Neill Blomkamp’s name from such films as District 9, Chappie, and Elysium. If you’ve seen any of those films, the short teaser trailer will seem somewhat familiar to you.
Security flaw in Xiaomi electric scooters could have deadly consequences
An attacker could target a rider, and then cause the scooter to suddenly brake or accelerate.
617 million stolen records up for sale on dark web
It may not be the first time the databases have been offered for sale.
IBM’s Project Debater unable to out-debate human
At this incredible display of technology, the result was remarkably close but the human managed to pip the machine in this instance.
LPL to broadcast weekly programming on Sky Sports
Let’s Play Live (LPL) has now announced it will broadcast weekly programming for the rest of 2019 on the Sky Sports channel from Sky TV. 
When hackers get the munchies, they just steal McDonalds
What happens when hackers get the munchies? Apparently in Canada, they decide to put their ‘hamburglar’ gloves on and go after unwitting people who happen to use the McDonalds app.
The smart home tech that will be huge in 2019
For millennial home buyers, a generation for whom technology has been ever-present, smart systems are the features they value above everything else.