Several clergy have recently been the targets of online scamming.
Scammers impersonated clergy by using similar-looking email addresses and have contacted Anglican-related organizations and people asking for gift cards.
We are alerting everyone to these scams and encouraging you to be vigilant to the risk of heightened scammer activity.
If you receive an email out of the blue asking you for money or to do something outside your ordinary activity please lean on the side of caution.
If you know the person who sent you the email, make contact with them on a separate platform and ask them about it.
The Christmas season is a time of increased online activity. Let’s grow in our awareness of how to remain safe online.
Anglican Movement Communications Team
Staying Safe Online
Netsafe NZ provides helpful advice about staying safe online. Their website can be found here.
Scams can also be reported via their website at
Netsafe’s Guide to Scam Spotting
An online scam is any scheme designed to trick people out of money or steal their personal information that uses, or is delivered via, digital communications. Here are a few tell-tale signs you might be being scammed:
• Contact that is out of the blue – even if the person says they’re from a legitimate organisation like the bank, an embassy or your internet provider.
• Getting told there’s a problem with your phone, laptop, or internet connections – often they will offer to fix your device or say they are from your phone or internet company.
• Being asked for passwords – legitimate organisations will never ask for the passwords to your online accounts.
• Needing to verify your account or details – don’t respond or click on any links in the communication even if it looks like it’s from a real organisation.
• Trying to get you to move outside of an online trading or booking website or app (like Air BnB) – don’t pay outside of the normal website or app processes.
• Offering money or a prize in exchange for something up front – they might say that it’s a “processing” fee or something similar.
• Being asked for money by friends/partners you’ve met online – this is a very common tactic, do not pay the money.
• Unusual ways to pay for something – scammers try to use payments that can’t be traced such as pre-loaded debit cards, gift cards, bitcoins, iTunes cards or money transfer systems.
• Asking for remote access to your device – never do this unless you have actively sought out the service they are providing.
• Pressuring you to make a decision quickly – this could be to avoid something bad (e.g. account being closed, trouble with the IRD) or to take advantage of something good (a deal or investment)