The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has issued a warning to VIPtel Mobile customers to not respond to any phone calls offering a refund in exchange for a fee.
In order to obtain the promised refund, which the scammer claims is the result of court action, customers are required to pay a fee via money transfer. The ACCC confirms there are no refunds for any former or current VIPtel Mobile customers due to the court actions.
In August last year, the telco provider faced allegations by the ACCC of misleading and unconscionable conduct in the Federal Court.
“This is a scam, there is no refund available and any money sent will be lost," ACCC deputy chair, Peter Kell, warned. "The ACCC advises VIPtel customers to hang up and not send any money."
In the past 13 weeks ACCC received more than 60 complaints and enquiries about the scam, with some reported losses totalling more than $3000.
Another sign of the scam is that the caller will say they are from Centrelink or an unspecified government department, a consulting company or may pretend to be a lawyer.
EDirect, which was trading as VIPtel Mobile, has been placed into external administration and a company called M2 Viptel has taken on all customer contracts.
M2 Viptel is aware of the scam and is taking steps to directly warn all its customers via SMS, invoices and notices on its website.