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ANZ ‘Upgrade to New System’ Phishing Scam

by Brett M. Christensen

Outline

Email pretending to be from large Australian and New Zealand bank ANZ claims that customers must click a link to upgrade to a new system technology designed to give users maximum protection.

Brief Analysis

The email is a phishing scam that tries to trick users into divulging their personal information to criminals. The “Log on” button opens a bogus website designed to steal the user’s ANZ account login details.

Example

Subject: ANZ Secure Alert

Dear Customer,
Enter your Internet Banking logon details to upgrade to our new system technology for your maximum protection.

Log on

ANZ Phishing Scam Email

 

Detailed Analysis

According to this email, which purports to be from the ANZ bank, customers are required to upgrade to a new system by logging into their accounts. The message claims that the new system will offer maximum protection and invites users to click a “Log on” button.

The email is formatted with ANZ’s logo and colour scheme to make it appear more genuine. However, the message is not from ANZ and the claim that users must login due to a system upgrade is untrue. The email is a simple phishing scam designed to grab account login credentials from unsuspecting ANZ customers.
People who click the link in the fake email will be taken to an equally fake webpage that contains a login box. Like the email, the fake page mirrors a genuine ANZ page.

If users enter their customer number and password on the fake page and click the “Log on” button, they will be automatically redirected to the genuine ANZ site. They may believe that they have successfully “upgraded” to the new system and may remain unaware that they have been scammed until the next time they try to login.

Meanwhile, the criminals can hijack the compromised accounts, transfer funds therein and conduct fraudulent transactions.

ANZ has published information about phishing scams on its website.

Phishing expeditions such as this are very common and almost continually target customers of major financial institutions all around the world. Despite widespread publicity about this type of scam, phishing still works.

Be wary of any unsolicited email that claims that you must log in to your account to perform an upgrade, update account details, fix an account error or deal with a supposed security breach.

To be safe, always login to your online accounts by entering the web address into your browser’s address bar or via the account’s official software or app. Do not click links in emails that ask you to log in. Do not open attachments that supposedly contain forms that you are required to fill out.

And, please ensure that your family members, friends and colleagues are aware of phishing scams and how they operate.

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,
Hoax-Slayer