Groups of students studying in Queensland have been targeted by scammers posing as public officials, with 44 falling victim so far.
Groups of students studying in Queensland have been targeted by scammers posing as public officials, with 44 falling victim so far.

Victim loses $120k in scam targeting students

CHINESE international student in Queensland are being targeting in a conniving scam, in which one student reportedly handed over more than $120,000.

Police said at least 44 Chinese international students have fallen victim to a so-called "Chinese Consulate scam".

Scammers claim to have received information from the Chinese police alleging the targeted student is connected to a criminal case in China.

The scammer then demands funds from the victim, to prevent the victim being deported from Australia and to avoid imprisonment in China.

Queensland international students have reported handing over between $100 and $128,000 to the scammers last year.

Detective Superintendent Terry Lawrence said the scammers contacted potential victims via unsolicited phone calls or online chat messages allegedly from the Chinese Consulate.

"This is a scam; our advice to anyone receiving such calls is to hang up and to report it to police," Detective Superintendent Terry Lawrence said.

"These forms of social engineering attacks, seen here, across Australia and the world, see criminals pretend to be from a legitimate organisation or government authority to get access to money or personal information."

The scam has promoted Queensland Police to release a video, featuring the Financial and Cyber Crime Group's Detective Senior Constable Shawn Chia, in Mandarin warning Chinese nationals of the scam.

Police said they will work alongside federal agencies to protect the community from these incidents.


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