Although tax time 2018 is over, the ATO has warned taxpayers and their agents to remain on high alert for tax scams. Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson has said scammers are growing increasingly sophisticated and hope to exploit vulnerable people, often using aggressive tactics to swindle people out of their money or personal information. The ATO has noticed an increasing trend of scammers demanding tax payments through Bitcoin ATMs.
People should be wary if someone contacts them demanding payment of a tax debt that they didn't know they owed. The ATO's advice is simple: it will never ask a person to make a payment into an ATM or via gift or pre-paid cards such as iTunes and Visa cards, or ask for direct credit to be paid to a personal bank account.
Taxpayers who lodge through a registered tax agent generally have longer to pay their tax bill, and will be advised by their tax agent if and when any tax payment is due. However, the ATO warned that scammers have been known to attempt to impersonate tax agents too. If people have any doubts about the legitimacy of a phone call or other communication, they can call the ATO (toll free) on 1800 888 540.