iTunes gift card scam costs woman $46,000 … Aussie dollar back above US80c … Does Amazon want to learn more Aussie lingo?

Amazon Australia

By Dominic Powell and Emma Koehn.

A 74-year-old Melbourne woman has been the victim of a $46,000 scam in which criminals convinced her to buy 330 iTunes gift cards and read out the codes to them over the phone.

Fairfax reports the woman was contacted by someone claiming to be from a major telecommunications company, who proceeded to ask her to withdraw cash and purchase the iTunes cards, along with gaining access to her online banking accounts in order to “fix her security problem”.

The offenders made transfers of cash between the victim’s three bank accounts in order to confuse her and make it look like the balance of her account was increasing,” detective senior constable Cameron Mitchell of the Yarra Crime Investigation Unit told Fairfax.

“The victim believed she was transferring the telco’s money to the overseas accounts when in fact it was her own.”

Police were alerted to the scam when a retail worker noticed the amount of cards the woman was purchasing and the amount of cash she had.

Aussie dollar on the rise

The Australian dollar has continued its upwards trajectory over the past few weeks, coming in at over 80 cents against the US dollar for the first time in two years today.

Business Insider reports the last time the dollar was this high was in May 2015, and the currency has increased 9% since May this year.

For business owners focused on currencies or planning international travel, now could be a good time to buy some other currencies, with the dollar trading at 68 cents against the euro, and 60 cents against the pound.

Does Amazon need an Australian language teacher?

Amazon and Google are going head-to-head in the race to create the world’s most accurate voice assistant software, and it looks like Amazon might be wanting to get information from the horse’s mouth about how Australians speak.

The New York Times reports the retail giant has advertised for an linguist of Australian English to join its Boston office, as part of its data team.

There’s speculation Amazon is after a true-blue Aussie to help it fine tune its voice-recognition device, Amazon Echo.

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