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MEDIA RELEASE

PO Box 10123
The Terrace
Wellington, 6143
New Zealand

Transparency International New Zealand
17 November 2020
Patron, Lyn Provost

Fraudsters exploit kindness; they are dangerous and malicious

Calling on New Zealanders to look out for each other, as scammers and fraudsters step up their attacks on kiwis and kiwi businesses.

This International Fraud Awareness Week, Transparency International New Zealand reminds everyone to be vigilant in avoiding fraud.

“The team of five million has worked together to protect us from a biological virus,” says Suzanne Snively, Chair of Transparency International New Zealand.  “We need a similar approach to protecting our personal financial and our business security.  We are under attack from sophisticated criminal cartels, many based overseas.”

Last year individual New Zealanders reported $23 million dollars of loss according to Netsafe – Aotearoa’s independent, non-profit online safety organisation.  That money represents life savings, house deposits and retirement funds. Older people are being targeted through telephone, or being threatened with extortion. Our youth are being attacked through gaming applications.

Our businesses are also facing assaults – we have seen million dollar losses through fraudulent scams, as well as ransomware and extortion efforts.  

Snively urges New Zealand families to make e-security a topic of family discussion and business governance. “Talk with your children, friends and relatives.  Just as we are using the COVID app and wearing masks, we need to protect our homes, incomes, businesses and our open lifestyle from attacks by malevolent fraudsters.”


Background information for journalists

  1. Media Contacts

    Julie Haggie

    Chief Executive Officer

    Transparency International New Zealand

    +64 27 498 9126

    Julie.haggie@tinz.org.nz

    Suzanne Snively

    Chair

    Transparency International New Zealand

    +64 21 925 689

    suzanne.snively@tinz.org.nz

  2. International Fraud Awareness Week

    International Fraud Awareness Week is part of the global effort to minimize the impact of fraud by promoting anti-fraud awareness and education.

  3. About Transparency International

    Transparency International is a global civil society coalition based in Berlin, leading the fight against corruption. In additional to Exporting Corruption, it compiles a number of measures of different aspects of corruption including the Corruption Perceptions Index, the Global Corruption Barometer, and the Bribe Payers Index. Information on Transparency International can be found at www.transparency.org.

  4. About the New Zealand chapter of Transparency International

    The local chapter of Transparency International works to actively promote the highest levels of transparency, accountability, integrity and public participation in government and civil society in New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. Find TINZ at www.transparency.org.nz.

    Transparency International New Zealand has several projects designed to support greater integrity.  These can be viewed in our Annual Report, and include:

    • National Integrity System Assessment, a risk assessment of the pillars of democracy
    • Development of a Financial Integrity Systems Assessment Tool, for use with the financial sector;
    • Leaders Integrity forums for senior public leaders
    • Submissions and advocacy
    • Thought leadership through communications and events.

    Chief Executive Officer

    Julie Haggie

    Transparency International New Zealand

    +64 27 498 9126

    Julie.haggie@tinz.org.nz

  5. PDF of Media Release

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