Email purporting to be from Australian bank Westpac, claims that the recipient’s account has been limited due to three incorrect login attempts and he or she should fill in and submit an attached form within 24 hours, or the account may be suspended.
The email is not from Westpac. The message is a phishing scam designed to trick recipients into divulging their personal and financial information to cybercriminals.
Subject: Account Notification : 3 incorrect login
Within Westpac latest security checks, we recently discovered that today there were 3 incorrect login attempts to your account. For your safety, Westpac set your account status to limited. For your account status to get back to normal, you will have to download and complete form number 613-752893 attached to this e-mail.
Due to our latest fraud attempts, the following IP adresses were recorded:
Invalid login from:
Invalid login from:
Invalid login from:
This form is mandatory, if you do not complete it in less then 24 hours, your account may get suspended.
Westpac Banking Corporation ABN 33 007 457 141 AFS Licence No. 233714.
This e-mail was officialy sent by Westpac Private Bank Executive Team, your reference number is (418-217-9908)
According to this email, a security check at Australian bank Westpac discovered that there was three incorrect login attempts on the recipient’s account and access to the account has therefore been limited for safety reasons. The message claims that the recipient must fill in and submit a “mandatory” form – included in an attached file – within 24 hours or the account may be suspended. The message comes complete with a seemingly official Westpac logo along with a supposed IP record of the failed login attempts and a “confirmation code”.
However, the message is not from Westpac and the claim that recipients must supply their information or risk account suspension is a lie. In fact, the message is a phishing scam designed to trick Westpac customers into handing over a large amount of personal and financial information to Internet criminals. Opening the attached file loads a fake HTML form into the user’s browser. The fake form is designed to resemble the genuine Westpac website and includes secondary links to the real Westpac site. The first form presented to victims asked for personal and contact information.
After the user has filled in the first form, a second form will appear that asks for credit card details
All information submitted on the fake forms will be sent to criminals who can then use it to commit credit card fraud and identity theft.
No legitimate financial institution would ever expect its customers to submit sensitive information via an unsecure form delivered via an email attachment. Phishing is a very common type of Internet fraud. Be wary of any message that claims that you must follow a link or open an attachment to update account details. Always login to your online accounts by entering the address into your browser’s address bar rather than by clicking a link in an email.
Westpac has information about online fraud and how to submit scam examples on its website.
Importance NoticeAfter 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 YouI 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 DateHoax-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!