A police warning has been issued in Australia about scammers phoning people claiming to be immigration officials and demanding fines be paid or they will face deportation.
Visa holders in Australia are usually aware that they should not breach the conditions of their visa and it can be stressful when a so called immigration officials contacts them.
The current scammers call and say they are from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) and state that the person’s visa, or a relative’s visa will be cancelled and they will be deported unless they pay a fine.
They give them an option of buying a number of gift cards to provide the caller with the verification numbers and several people have been scammed out of considerable amounts of money.
They seem to be operating in the Woolgoolga area and particularly targeting the Indian community, according to a police spokesman who said anyone receiving a call out of the blue supposedly from a government department should be aware.
In this instance if the call relates to purchasing gift cards it should be reported to the police, but anyone worried about a scam caller can contact the DIBP.
The immigration department normally sends you a letter to your email or mailing address to notify you of a pending cancellation of your visa. They may follow it up with a phone call, however, there should always be something in writing given to you. Therefore, do not pay anyone over the phone claiming it will resolve your visa issues.
First published on Australia Forum.