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Urgent warning on supermarket scam spreading on social media

Job hunters around Australia are being urged to be wary of a new supermarket scam as authorities crack down on fraudsters.

A new and sophisticated job scam has joined a growing list of phony offers, with confused applicants turning to social media for answers.

Fake recruitment letters, which have been confirmed as a scam, are being circulated on social media, with vulnerable Australians targeted by the swindlers.

The letters, which promise applicants a range of ALDI positions and salaries, appear to contain an official ALDI Australia letterhead and watermark.

In one dodgy letter, an applicant, who had already applied for a job with the supermarket, was offered a position in Adelaide as a Warehouse Manager with a monthly salary of $7500.

“With reference to your previous application for job engagement to ALDI Australia supermarket, and the management hereby congratulates you on your successful emergence based on detailed recruitment by our official recruitment consultants,” the letter states.

He took to Twitter to confirm with ALDI whether the offer was genuine.

“I got the appointment letter – could you please confirm it’s genuine or fake? I will wait for reply,” the job hunter wrote.

ALDI Australia responded to confirm the letter was fake.

“This is not a legitimate letter from ALDI Australia,” the comment read.

“We recommend visiting http://aldicareers.com.au to view our current job vacancies.”

The letter provides a range of instructions which the applicant must follow as part of the recruitment process, which are suspected to enable fraudsters to gain money and or personal details from their victims.

Social media users have cautioned others about the scam, with one shopper warning the fake job ad was being circulated on Facebook.

“Message to all ALDI shoppers, there is a scam post targeting people who want to give you a job and to click on their site,” they said.

“Don’t do it, Facebook has to weed out these f***ing mongrels targeting vulnerable people. Be careful.”

Another ALDI fan commented on the post, saying they had seen the scam posted “a few times a week”.

ALDI Australia has been contacted for comment.

With new and increasingly sophisticated scams popping up across the internet, Gina Cass-Gottlieb, chair of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, said a three-pronged approach was being used to tackle the issue.

Camera IconACCC chair Gina Cass-Gottlieb says a three-pronged approach is needed to take down scammers. NCA NewsWire / Christian Gilles Credit: News Corp Australia

“First, we need to stop scammers reaching consumers by disrupting the means by which they contact would-be victims – whether through phone calls, SMS, email or social media,” Ms Cass-Gottlieb said in a speech at the Law Council of Australia’s 2022 Consumer Law Forum in Sydney last week.

“Second, we need to better educate consumers so that if a scam contact makes it through to them, they are able to recognise it as a scam.”

Ms Cass-Gottlieb said scammers are using “increasingly sophisticated and cunning” methods to trick consumers and businesses.

“Finally, we need measures in place so that if a consumer is convinced to attempt to transfer funds to a scammer, there is a safety net there to prevent this from happening,” she said.

Almost $1.8 billion in combined losses were reported to authorities in 2021, including Scamwatch and Report Cyber.

“Once we consider the fact that about a third of scam victims don’t report their losses, the real figure lost to scams in 2021 was well more than $2 billion,” Ms Cass-Gottlieb said, calling the figures “staggering”.

The chairwoman said the fight against scams was never-ending.

“No sooner do we succeed in shutting down one scam than another springs up in its place,” she said.

The ACCC boss said government, consumer groups, the financial services sector and the telecommunications sector were working together to bring down scammers across the country.

“Take this as a call to action to make Australia the world’s hardest scam target,” she said.

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