Super scheme targeted
Fraudsters are targeting new measures that allow people early access to their superannuation.
The Federal Government has sought to unlock billions of dollars for workers hit by the COVID-19 economic crisis by allowing them to take money out of their super.
However, the Government was recently forced to suspend withdrawals for two days after the Australian Tax Office revealed criminals had been able to break into the system using stolen identity records.
Authorities are investigating claims that the attackers set up fake myGov accounts in their victims' names to lodge fraudulent early release super applications, worth up to $10,000 each.
The Government and the ATO say they have tightened security on the scheme, but have not provided any detail about the changes.
“The ATO constantly recalibrates its systems so that they're secure, and the system has been working very well since,” Assistant Minister for Superannuation Jane Hume said.
The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) says there have been “some identified cases of fraudulent account creation” since the ATO upgrades.
Services Australia, which operates myGov, says it is still possible to set up multiple myGov accounts in one person's name.
“However, a myGov account alone does not give access to any member services,” it said.
“Identity fraud generally occurs when a person's login credentials or identity information are compromised or stolen by another individual, and this information is then used to access their record.”
Australia’s super industry lobbies have written a joint letter to the ATO, Treasury, APRA, ASIC as well as Senator Hume, calling for tighter screening including “prior verification of bank account details submitted via myGov by the ATO against member account details held by bank”.
Senator Hume maintains that current security measures are enough.