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Crackdown on phone and text scams

More Australians are set to benefit from new action to crack down on frustrating and potentially costly scam messaging.

Senator for Victoria Sarah Henderson said the Morrison Government has taken strong action to shut down scam text messages.

“Scam text messages and calls are not only annoying – they have a real impact on lives, with people being defrauded, their identities stolen, or their devices disabled.  It’s a serious problem,” Senator Henderson said.

“Working with industry, the Morrison Government has made an important regulatory amendment empowering the telecommunication sector to identify and block SMS scams at source.

“The regulatory amendment provides the telecommunications sector with the authority they need to block malicious SMS messages at scale and protect the Australian public from scammers.

“It won’t mean they disappear overnight, but it does mean more can be done to stop this insidious activity that affects many unsuspecting people.

“Don’t click any link sent to them in a text or email – even if it appears to be from a legitimate source.  It’s worth checking on the origin of any unexpected text or email.”

This year, SMS and phone scam reports are double those reported to Scamwatch in 2020, resulting in over $87 million being lost by the Australian community.

The regulatory announcement comes in addition to the Morrison Government’s Reducing Scam Calls Code, which has resulted in more than 214 million scam calls being blocked since December 2020.

Practical information to help Australians stay secure from cybercrime is available at the Australian Government’s dedicated cyber security website.  While Scams can be reported to Scamwatch at

2 December 2021

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