Fake Telstra bill notification scam

Be on the lookout for a large-scale email scam that is targeting inboxes across Australia.

The currently ongoing scam pretends to be from Telstra and masquerades as a bill notification from the telecommunications giant.

The email is in plain text, with no Telstra branding. However, it is otherwise well formatted and authentic in appearance, and can be easily mistaken as a legitimate notification from the company.  

Using a display name of “Telstra”, the email actually comes from one of a large number of compromised accounts. It advises the recipient that their latest Telstra bill is now ready to be viewed. A link is included to “View Bill”, as per the screenshot below:

Unsuspecting people who click on the link to view their bill are taken to what currently shows a loading page:

This page is likely to lead to a Telstra branded phishing page or potentially a malicious file download.

While this scam isn’t as sophisticated in design as others that have done the rounds, Cyber-criminals do use several elements within the email body to convince recipients that it is a legitimate notification from Telstra. A key feature is the inclusion of the sentence ‘Please note: Telstra will never ask you to provide credit card, or banking details via email.”

This disclaimer, along with the included link to the telecommunication company’s online assistance contact page, boosts the credibility of the email as it is a common feature that recipients are used to seeing in legitimate notifications from Telstra.

Telstra, by its large database and established brand credibility, is an ideal company to spoof by cybercriminals as it widens their victim pool.

Telstra’s website offers this advice to their customers on how to recognise and avoid email scams:

  • Never trust emails that ask for personal details
  • Think twice before giving personal details online – instead, contact the sender using their publicly available contact details
  • Visit trusted websites via their URL, rather than clicking a link in the email
  • Only provide financial details on secure websites
  • Use a spam filter to help block unsolicited and hoax emails

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