How do I avoid scams?

When you have been asked for personal information, to sign up to something or to hand over money there are some key things to bear in mind:

  • There are no get-rich-quick schemes: 'if it seems too good to be true, it probably is'.
  • Don't hand over your personal details or money to someone you haven't met who solicits them from you online, via e-mail or text.
  • Be wary about providing personal information, passwords or bank details in response to communications that you owe money or that you are owed money.
  • When you are buying goods or services on-line check make sure you know who you are dealing with.Check review sites, social media and websites like Scamwatch to find out about other peoples experiences before you hand over money or personal details.

What types of scams does the Commission deal with?

The Commission can take action about misleading or deceptive conduct that occurs in trade, for example in the context of the sale or supply of goods or services. These include:

  • pyramid schemes
  • prize and lottery scams
  • online retailers who don't supply
  • fake billing scams
  • dating service scams.

Tell us about a scam

We encourage consumers to contact us with concerns about a scam or potential scam. From time-to-time the Commission will issue a media release warning consumers about a scam or potential scam. You can read more in our consumer media releases.

Find out more

Find out more about scams and consider reporting them to other agencies that specifically deal with certain types of scams:

  • Consumer Protection provides some excellent resources on protecting your money and personal data from scams.
  • Netsafe offers great advice for New Zealanders about staying safe online and you can report online safety and security incidents to them.
  • DIA's Anti-Spam Unit provides advice on avoiding scams where individuals are contacted by email or phone.
  • You can report financial and investment scams to the Financial Markets Authority (FMA). Their website has information about how to avoid financial and investment scams and steps you can take to protect yourself.
  • You can report instances of fraud and theft to your local police station.
  • Report banking scams to your bank or financial institution.
  • The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) provide resources on spotting and avoiding scams on their Scamwatch webpage which includes examples of scams that are circulating through Australasia.