Apple customers warned of scam that's fleeced hundreds of dollars from users

Apple customers are being warned to be more vigilant, after several customers have complained of having hundreds of dollars taken from their bank accounts.

One Apple customer had nearly $600 taken from her account of the space of around a week, with the payment made to Apple Sydney from her account.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment said its highly likely to be a classic phishing scam, with the payment going to what looks to be a legitimate Apple account.

Her bank, ASB, is investigating.

In a statement the bank said:  "We are aware some customers are experiencing unauthorised activity on their cards via this merchant and we have measures in place to minimise the impact from this activity."

Another customer, Kelly Armitage, wrote on Facebook: "Word of warning everyone. If you have weird charges on your credit card that come up "APPLE NZ GCSSYDNEY" then chances are you've been scammed"

"Despite thinking I was seriously IT security conscious, I was duped and had $200+ taken over multiple small transactions that look like any normal Apple charge.

"At first I was worried I was racking up charges through my addiction to Spider Solitaire and Candy Crush, but no – it's a scam. Be careful out there everyone!"

MBIE Consumer Protection Manager Mark Hollingsworth says they are aware if reports over the last couple of weeks of people with similar issues.

Mr Hollingsworth said it's likely people have been emailed and told to put their card details into what seems like a legitimate website.

He said people need to be aware of these types of scams.

"It's ok to be suspicious of anything that asks for personal details. Large corporations usually don't ask for personal information," he said.

However one person 1 NEWS spoke to said she was certain she had not replied to any email from what appeared to be Apple.

Apple did not respond to email requests. The company offers advice for what to do if you've been scammed and how to avoid it on its website.

Generic man typing computer internet ominous
Computer (file picture). Source: 1 NEWS



South Auckland charity The Aunties takes home top Women of Influence Award

The founder of a South Auckland charity group dubbed The Aunties has won the top honour at the Women of Influence Awards.

Jackie Clark set up the not-for-profit organisation six years ago to help vulnerable women and children who've experienced domestic violence.

The group's primary aim is to provide material needs to those they support.

"The Aunties believe everyone has the right to be safe, to have shelter, to be fed, to be loved, to dream, to read, to write, to have their say, and to be heard," the group proclaims on its Givealittle page. "Where any of those things are missing, the Aunties mission is to help provide them - the practical things, and also in terms of advocacy and pastoral care."

The group says it believes in manaakitanga - protecting the mana of the people they help so that they can find their way towards living independently, and with dignity and joy.

"Jackie and her fellow Aunties give without seeking anything in return and without judgement," said Westpac NZ chief executive David McLean, whose company co-sponsors the Women of Influence Awards. "She, and her core of other Aunties, ask vulnerable women what they need and then set about making it happen, in a completely selfless way.

"They have made an enormous contribution to our local communities at grassroots level."

The award ceremony was held last night at SkyCity in Auckland.

Here's the full list of winners:
Supreme Winner: Jackie Clark
Lifetime Achievement: Theresa Gattung
Arts and Culture: Miranda Harcourt
Board and Management: Dr Farah Palmer
Business and Enterprise: Angie Judge
Rural: Rebecca Keoghan
Public Policy: Charlotte Korte
Community/Not for Profit: Jackie Clark
Innovation and Science: Professor Wendy Larner
Diversity: Sarah Lang
Global: Sarah Vrede
Young Leader: Maddison McQueen-Davies

Jackie Clark set up the non-for-profit six years ago, which aims to help vulnerable women and children who have experienced domestic violence. Source: Breakfast


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Eleven Glenorchy homes still without power 48 hours after early spring snowfall

Some resident in Central Otago's Glenorchy are still without power 48 hours after a spring snowfall caused major disruptions in the deep south.

Eleven properties remains with power this morning.

Aurora Energy is hoping to have power restored to the area by this evening.

Around 360 households in the central Otago town are affected, with Aurora Energy hoping to have electricity back on by this evening. Source: Breakfast

In many places power was cut, schools were closed and flights cancelled. Source: 1 NEWS

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Watch: Artist uses pyramid in central Auckland to spread some joy around town

A Kiwi artist are architect is using a pyramid in central Auckland to spread some joy.

Matt Liggins has made it his mission to ask people what makes them smile, but instead of rolling up to you on the street he's built a pyramid to help lighten people's moods.

TVNZ1's Seven Sharp's Lucas de Jong went along to take a look and share a laugh in the video above.

Matt Liggins has made it his mission to ask Kiwis what makes them smile. Source: Seven Sharp


Meet the transgender Wellington school caretaker brightening up kids' days

A transgender caretaker at a Wellington school has been using her musical talents to brighten up the kids' days.

Molly Mason was born as Michael, but soon discovered she was a female born in a man's body.

"I believe I'm a woman, and I associate as a woman, so I live my life as a woman," Molly told TVNZ1's Seven Sharp.

Molly has a love of music that began when she was just six.

Now, in her role as caretaker at a Wellington school, she uses her talent to good effect by beat boxing with the kids at lunchtime.

"When I realised that beat boxing and making sounds was something I couldn't live without, that was it, nothing else mattered."

However, to be this woman - that little boy Michael, had a fight on his hands.

"I got bullied from primary school right through until the day I left college and left Blenheim."

Molly is now proud to be transgender and says the stage is her safe place. She performs as her drag alter ego called Bette Noir.

"Anything that makes me sad, makes me worried, makes me scared, anything that I find stressful, it's not there, it's gone." 

Seven Sharp’s Arrun Soma spoke with Molly Mason. Source: Seven Sharp