Scam Targeting Importers

Seabridge Global Logistics News

AUSTRALIANS who buy goods online from overseas should be wary of scam emails requesting they pay 'Customs' a range of fees, duty or taxes before their goods are released to them.

The fake emails may use old seizure notices from the former Australian Customs and Border Protection Service or signature blocks to legitimise the email, and request payment in US dollars.

The Department and Immigration and Border Protection (the Department) will NEVER contact Australians via email requesting the payment of duty, GST and/or other charges in order for the purchaser to receive their goods. The Department will never ask you to send your personal or bank details via email.


Certain goods brought into Australia do require an import permit, and the Australian Border Force may detain such goods pending presentation of the permit. Where goods are detained for permit purposes, you will receive written advice directly by mail from the Department.

If you receive a questionable email, your best protection is to delete the email immediately.

Do not click on any links in a spam email or open any files attached to them. Never call a telephone number that you see in a spam email.

Most importantly –

Never send money, give credit card details or online account details to anyone you do not know and trust.

Seabridge has the expertise and qualifications to advise on import regulations and processes, please contact us before buying goods over the internet to avoid scams.

To report a suspected scam, visit the SCAMwatch Report a scam page.

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