Aussies more suspicious yet equally likely to fall for scams


More than half of Aussies claim to be very or extremely knowledgeable about fraud and scams yet 30 per cent report having fallen for one or multiple scams, according to Visa’s 2022 fraud report


As the move to digital commerce continues, fraudsters are counting on consumers to let their guard down and to supply personal information. And according to new research released today by global payments technology company Visa (NYSE: V), which surveyed 6,000 consumers in 18 markets worldwide, scammers appear to be thriving in the gap between consumers’ awareness of the language of fraud and their actual behaviour.

The report from Visa, “Fraudulese: The Language of Fraud”, brings to light that when it comes to spotting scams, cybercriminals are finding vulnerabilities among even the most tech-savvy consumers.

The report found that more than half of Australians (51per cent) claim to be ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ knowledgeable about scams. Aussies say they are highly suspicious of requests to reset passwords (78 per cent) and any notices regarding problems with an order, subscription or account (63 per cent).

Australians also exhibit a high level of discernment when it comes to the most common words or phrases employed by fraudsters. Close to half (46 per cent) are mistrusting and suspicious of the most common fraud tactics and phrases compared to just 21 per cent in Asia Pacific. However, this level of discernment does not seem to translate to the actual number of people falling victim to scams, with Australian respondents reporting a similar rate to the rest of the Asia Pacific region (30 per cent vs. 35 per cent).

“Understanding the language of fraud is increasingly essential in our digital-first world. While our new study demonstrates that Australian consumers are savvy when it comes to spotting signs of fraud in our emails, texts and messages, scammers have reached new heights of sophistication,” said Martyna Lazar, Visa’s Head of Risk in Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific.

“Easter is a popular period for retail sales which makes education and the proper discernment of the language of scams an integral part of consumer protection,” she added.

In the last year alone, Visa has proactively blocked $7.2 USD billion globally in attempted fraudulent payments across 122 million transactions before those transactions impacted clients.

Other top findings include:

  • We think others are more susceptible to fraud than we are. While Australians feel confident in their own vigilance, the vast majority (81 per cent) are concerned that friends or family members may fall for potential scams that include emails or text messages asking people to verify their account information, asking about overdrawn bank accounts and notifying them about winning a gift card or product from an online shopping site.
  • Recognising tell-tale signs. 72 per cent of Aussies reported looking to ensure a communication is sent from a valid email address, compared to 55 per cent from Asia Pacific. And 64 per cent check that words are spelled correctly, compared to 46 per cent in the region.
  • A generation misconception. 94 per cent of Australian respondents believe ‘older people’ are more likely to fall victim to online scams. However, global data paints a different story – with Boomers least likely to report ever being a victim of a scam (29 per cent), compared to Gen Z (38 per cent), Millennials (39 per cent) and Gen X (33 per cent).


Methodological Notes

The Visa Security Global Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research ( among 6,000 Nationally Representative Adults in 18 Markets: US, Canada, Brazil, UK, France, Germany, Netherlands, UAE, Spain, Italy, Ireland, Australia, Mainland China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, between September 7th and September 14th, 2022, using an email invitation and an online survey. 400 Australian adults were surveyed.

About Visa Inc.

Visa (NYSE: V) is a world leader in digital payments, facilitating transactions between consumers, merchants, financial institutions and government entities across more than 200 countries and territories. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, convenient, reliable and secure payments network, enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. We believe that economies that include everyone everywhere, uplift everyone everywhere and see access as foundational to the future of money movement. Learn more at