Dad Foils an Annoying Woolworths Scam With a Clever, Golden Response

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Australians have come together creatively to combat scammers recently caught pretending they had no money inside Woolworths.

In a desperate attempt to acquire cash quickly, con artists have donned the guise of children stranded in grocery stores with no valid debit card or insufficient funds.

“I’m currently at Woolworths, and unfortunately, I left my wallet with the wrong card in it. Would you be so kind to send me $314.32? As soon as I get back home, I will make sure to repay the money. Thank you!”; a text received by a Sunshine Coast dad on Sunday read.

After devoting some time to finding the most suitable reply, he shared it on Facebook.

“Just find the cashier named [blank]. He let me [blank] him the other day to take payment for the week’s groceries,” part of his response read.

Last month, I sacrificed and worked tirelessly to pay for your father’s birthday presents. The same can be expected from you when the time comes. Love Mum.” the response further read. 

The ingenious answer was immediately dubbed “gold” by community members, with many claiming they had experienced an identical message.

This morning, I received a text message claiming to be from my mom. However, there was no contact picture, so I knew it wasn’t really her—plus she would never spend $800 at Woolies!” one person responded.

Countless Australians have gone online to post screenshots of their experiences with the scam. It gets even more alarming: scammers are using SMS identification technology so that their messages appear as if they were sent by “mum” instead of an unknown phone number. It is impossible not to be unnerved. 

By ending each note with a BSB and account number, these con artists have tricked Australians out of millions of dollars in the “Hi mum” scam since its emergence early last year. That is why the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has issued an alert regarding this matter.
We have seen an explosion in the number of ‘Hi Mum’ scams in the past couple of months, and so we are warning Australians to be very wary of messages from unknown numbers claiming to be from their children, parents, relatives, or friends,” ACCC deputy chair Delia Rickard said last year.

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