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If you are a business owner, you will need to keep on top of all your business processes. This includes the renewal of your business name. This is usually a standard process. However, scammers pretending to be from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) have become more prevalent in recent years. To help you both identify and avoid these scams, this article will take you through key things to look out for that will help you identify an ASIC business name renewal scam.

Renewing Your Business Name

As a business owner, you must renew your business name on a regular basis. The price of renewing your business name will depend on the period for which you renew your name. Currently, these prices are:

One year renewal $37
Three year renewal $88

You will only be able to renew your business name once you receive a notice from ASIC. Once ASIC sends a request for renewal, you have 30 days before your renewal is due. Knowing the approximate date your business name renewal is due will help you avoid scams.

Scam Emails

As more business processes go online, the more common scams become. While you might think spotting a scam is easy, this is not necessarily true. Scams are becoming more sophisticated each year, making it increasingly difficult to tell what is real and what is not. With an ASIC business name renewal scam, the two main forms are:

  • fake emails; and
  • fake letters in the mail.

These scams are dangerous because they request both money and your personal information. Payment details or personal identifiers in the wrong hands could be a serious detriment to your business.

How to Identify Renewal Scams

It can be difficult to determine if an email or letter from ASIC is authentic. Scam letters and emails often have very genuine looking logos and come from seemingly veritable sources. Some things to look out for when determining if you are being scammed include if:

  • they are asking you to pay a fee over the phone;
  • you are due to renew your business name; and
  • they are asking you to provide credit card or banking details by email.

Note whether the fees requested are different from ASIC’s listed renewal fees.

If the scam is by email, you should check that the email came from ASIC’s official email contacts. This includes:

  1. ASIC.Transaction.No-reply@asic.gov.au; and
  2. https://asic.gov.au/

If you receive an email from an email address different to one of the email addresses listed above, it is likely to be a scam. You should avoid clicking any links, replying to these emails or opening any attachments.

Notifying ASIC

If you think you have identified an ASIC scam, it is important that you notify ASIC. This can help alert ASIC to any new scams that are prevalent. This information can then be used to educate others and prevent others from being scammed. 

You can notify ASIC by providing a copy of scam emails to ReportASICEmailFraud@asic.gov.au.

How to Protect Yourself from ASIC Scams

There are several steps you can take to protect yourself and your business from ASIC scams. You should ensure that you:

  • update your cybersecurity software;
  • ensure everyone who works for you can identify scam emails and letters; and
  • make sure you know your business name expiration date.

To find your business name renewal date, you can search for your business name on ASIC’s register.

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Key Takeaways

Avoiding ASIC’s email scams is important to help protect your personal information. Some major things to watch out for include if you:

  • were asked to pay a fee over the phone;
  • are due to renew your business name; and
  • were asked to provide credit card or banking details by email.

If you need assistance protecting your business against online scams, our experienced lawyers can help. You can contact LegalVision’s IT lawyers on 1300 544 755 or fill out the form on this page.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to renew my business name?

As a business owner, you will be required to renew your business name. You can renew your business name for a one or three year period. The price of renewing your business name will depend on the period for which you renew your name.

How do I identify an ASIC business name renewal scam?

It can often be difficult to decipher if an email or letter from ASIC is authentic. These scams usually ask for both money and your personal details. Some key things that suggest you are being scammed include being asked to pay a fee over the phone, being requested banking details by email or being requested to pay more than ASIC’s listed renewal fees.

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