NICS 2018/2019 National Project

‘Too good to be true’ NICS 2018/19 National Project


National Indigenous Consumer Strategy (NICS) Action Plan sets out priority areas to assist NICS members in improving outcomes for Indigenous consumers. The NICS 2018 National project ‘Too good to be true’ covers priority 1 in the Action Plan is to address key consumer issues for Indigenous communities. One of these key consumer issues is identified as scam practices.

The Project also aligns with Priority 2 in the NICS Action Plan, Building agency capacity specific to Indigenous consumer issues, by developing the capability of NICS member agencies to undertake effective outreach and engagement activities.
Report of scam conduct affecting Indigenous consumers is increasing, and advances in technology now mean that scammers can easily target consumers in remote Indigenous communities.


The project aims to engage, educate and empower Indigenous consumers. There will be key messaging used throughout the Project which will focus on the warning signs or key characteristics of scams, rather than the different types of scams.
The key messages about warning signs of scams are:

  1. If a stranger contacts you and asks for personal information;
  2. If a stranger contacts you and asks for money or bank details (even if they promise more money in return)
  3. A stranger contacts you and tells you that you have won a prize in a competition or lottery that you never entered
  4. You get an offer from someone that seems too good to be true

Key messages about what Indigenous consumers can do if they think they, or a friend or family member, have been contacted by a scammer are:

  1. STOP: think twice and stop contact with someone immediately if they ask you to send money or give out personal information;
  2. CHECK: Is the person who they say they are? Call the business directly, or contact the ACCC on 1300 303 143;
  3. ACT: report scams to the ACCC Indigenous Infoline (1300 303 143). If you have lost money, call your bank straight away. Remember, you’re not to blame, so don’t feel shame; and
  4. MENTION: warn your family and friends so they do not get caught by the scam too.


The target audience for the Project is all Indigenous Australians consumers, including those who live in remote Indigenous communities. Communicating key messages will take place primarily by way of face-to-face engagement through outreach activities with residual messaging to include fridge magnets (providing agency contact details) and Facebook messaging.


Project implementation stage will commence July 2018 through to June 2019 and will involve NICS member agencies undertaking planned outreach activities.