What you need to know about fraudulent activity and financial scams, and how to protect yourself.



Generate contributor


What you need to know about fraudulent activity and financial scams, and how to protect yourself.

There’s been a significant rise in fraudulent activity and scams in the financial industry recently. These scams can result in financial losses and in many cases the money can’t be recovered. While many Kiwis tend to adopt a “she’ll be right” and “it won’t happen to me” mentality, scammers are getting smarter and fraudulent activity is getting harder to detect. Everybody is a target. 

That’s why we wanted to remind our members about some of the different types of popular financial scams, so you can stay alert and keep your money safe. 

Phishing Scams 

Phishing is when someone tries to trick you into giving them sensitive information, like your passwords, login, credit card numbers, or personal details. They do this by pretending to be someone trustworthy, like your bank, your KiwiSaver provider or an online store. They might send you an email that looks real, with a link to a website that also looks real, but it's actually fake. If you fall for it and enter your information, they can use it to hack
into your accounts. So, it's important to be careful and double-check before giving out any personal info online, especially if you're not sure about the message or the website it's from.

Protecting yourself:

Generate will never ask for your credit card number, login details or password.

Scams come in many different forms – phone calls, online shopping, text messages, mail addressed to you, letterbox drops, social media posts, and messages. An email is a popular form of contact for scammers so beware of emails asking you to click a link or submit your personal information.  One of the first things to check is the sender's email address – look out for unusual spelling, random numbers or characters within the sender's email address, or just generally an unknown sender address. We have suggested some tips below to keep you safe:

  • Never share your login details, password, or PIN with anyone.

  • Avoid repetitive or sequential numbers for your PIN. Never use your birthday – it’s the first thing a scammer will try.

  • Be aware that Generate will never ask you to disclose your PIN over the phone.

  • Keep your computer and phone’s security software up to date.  Automate the updates. 

  • Avoid using public Wi-Fi.

  • Don’t click on links sent by someone you don’t know or seem out of character for someone you do know.

  • Hover over the links to reveal the actual site. If it doesn’t seem right, call the sender using contact details you already have or that are available on their website.

  • Never give someone remote access to your computer or device if you didn’t initiate the call yourself.

You can also help others stay safer online by reporting any online scams you come across at CertNZ.govt.nz

Remember if it looks too good to be true, it probably is!

Remote Access Scams

Remote access scams are when someone contacts you out of the blue, claiming to be from a tech support company or company you engage with (e.g. Amazon, your Bank, your KiwiSaver provider). They might say there's a problem with your computer or your online account, or that they need to fix some security issue urgently. They'll then ask you to give them remote access to your computer, usually by downloading a program or visiting a website they provide.

Once they're in, they can mess with your computer, steal your personal information or even lock you out of your accounts.  So, if someone you don't know reaches out and asks for remote access to your computer, it's best to report it. And never give access to your computer to someone you don't trust or didn't initiate contact with.

Protecting yourself:

Generate will never ask you to give us remote access to your computer or phone, or to download software like Anydesk or Team Viewer.

Make sure you always know what you are downloading, how it works and why you are downloading it.

Beware of anyone asking you to take action – especially if they insist you act with urgency. Scammers often use a sense of urgency as a way to prevent victims from thinking clearly. If they do contact you, break contact with the offender and call the company back using the details you already have or that are available on the verified company website.

Cold Call Scams 

This is when you are contacted unexpectedly and asked for your personal details, which could give the scammers access to your accounts. Some common signs of this scam are when they may say to keep your account safe you need to transfer money to another account, give them personal or account information like login or passwords. If you experience an unknown caller asking for your personal details the best thing to do is hang up and block the number.

Protecting yourself:

Beware of anyone calling you off an unknown or international phone number. If you are not expecting a call – don’t answer. Wait for them to leave a message, send a TXT or google their phone number.

Generate do not have any international teams and we will never call you from an international phone number.

We'll also never ask you to move money to another account to keep it safe or help us catch criminals or hackers.

How can you keep yourself safe from financial fraud and scams? 

Stay Informed: Keep yourself updated on common scams and fraud tactics. Be vigilant for any unexpected or suspicious phone calls. If you have any doubt about emails sent from Generate, phone us using our official phone number, 0800 855 322.

Verify Sources: Be cautious of unsolicited communications, whether it's emails, phone calls, or text messages. Verify the identity of the sender or caller before providing any personal information or engaging in financial transactions.

Protect Personal Information: Avoid sharing sensitive information, such as passwords, IRD numbers, or financial details, unless you are certain of the recipient's legitimacy and the security of the communication channel.

Use Secure Websites: When making online transactions or sharing personal information, ensure that you are using secure websites with "https://" in the URL and a padlock symbol in the address bar.

Trust Your Instincts: If something seems too good to be true or feels suspicious, trust your gut. Take the time to investigate further or seek advice from trusted sources before taking any action.

If you believe you've been targeted by a scam that looks like it has come from Generate, contact us immediately.  If you believe you've been targeted by a scam that doesn’t relate to Generate or want to learn more about how to protect yourself from scams and frauds visit: