Dec 01, 2016 06:00 AM EST

Australian Miners Beware: 'Phishing' Employment Website Scams Unemployed Miners Of Identity And Money!

By JC Santos
Australian Mining
Unemployed Australian miners are at risk of losing their money and identity through a phishing website
(Photo : George Frey/Stringer via Getty Images)

According to the Department of Consumer Protection, unemployed miners should beware the fake website "miningjobswa.org." The unsuspecting applicant would believe the website is legitimate but the DCP said it is a "phishing" website aimed to steal the applicant's identity, bank account numbers and even pension numbers. The domain name registered has made it troublesome for authorities to find the culprits.

According to ABC.net.au, Department of Consumer Protection Lanie Chopping and her department found it difficult to shut down the website given its "org" domain name. She said the scammers could have hosted the website internationally or just in Australia. Further in the report, ABC cites DCP's discovery that one applicant was scammed a "few hundred dollars" but suspect that people have lost more.

Miners find themselves unemployed more than ever. According to an Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy survey of over 2,300 people, about 16.2 per cent of Australia's mining professionals are out of work. According to the surveyor's CEO Michael Catchpole, commodity prices and a move from construction to production indicate a natural reduction in jobs in the sector.

According to AustralianMining.com.au, Rio Tinto's job cuts in Western Australia the company blames to certain "iron ore" conditions. In a statement, the company said their market perspective for iron ore is "challenging" as they try to find a balance between cost reduction and productivity improvement. Rio Tinto's problem could be the same as with other mining companies. The high unemployment rate of professional miners in Australia makes them vulnerable to "phishing" websites offering employment opportunities.

The easiest way to spot a "phishing" website is to check the URL. An "http://" that asks for sensitive information is likely to be a fraud website that is trying to steal your identity. An "https://" has an SSL security certificate used by sites such as Paypal and Gmail to safeguard the information you provide.

Hackers and scammers target not only individuals but also entire companies. During the first half of 2016, hackers targeted computer tech company Seagate's employee database through a "phishing" email.

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