InFocus February 2017 - Volume 26 Issue 1
- Scams targeting ASIC customers
- Outcome of ASIC Registry separation tender
- Closing your business?
- Looking for information on a company or business name? Try an Information Broker
- How registered agents can save time online
- What is a requisition?
- Australia/China Business Exchange Fair
- ATO small business conversations
Scammers pretending to be from ASIC have been contacting Registry customers asking them to pay fees and give personal information to renew their business or company name.
The emails contain a link that will either provide an invoice with fake payment details, or try to infect your computer with malware.
These emails are examples of Phishing and Pharming scams.
Phishing scams try to trick you into giving out personal information such as your banking details, passwords and credit card numbers.
Pharming scams often redirect you to a fake version of legitimate websites. This is done by infecting your computer with malware, which triggers a redirect to the fake site.
To assist our customers, we have set up a dedicated webpage with information to help you identify suspicious emails as well as tips for protecting yourself from email scams. If you're unsure if an email is from ASIC, you can also forward it to us for verification. The email address is included on our webpage.
On 19 December last year the Government announced the result of the market testing for private sector interest to upgrade, operate and add value to the registry functions of the ASIC registry.
Following the evaluation of the final bid phase, the Government decided not to engage a private operator for the ASIC Registry. Read the Government's media release for more information.
Depending on whether you have a company or business name, there are different requirements when you close your business.
If your business is registered as a company, you should apply to deregister it if you are no longer trading. There is a $38.00 application fee to voluntarily deregister your company. You will need to pay this fee in addition to any other outstanding fees and penalties before you apply for deregistration.
We will eventually deregister your company for you if you do not pay your annual review fee, however you may accrue late fees and other debts in the meantime that could impact your credit rating.
Find out more about deregistering a company.
If you have a business name, you have fewer obligations. If you're no longer operating you should cancel it. Or if you don't pay your next renewal, we will cancel your business name for you.
You can also cancel it yourself through ASIC Connect - it's free.
Find out the steps to cancel your business name.
Next time you need information about a company or business name, consider using an information broker.
Information brokers use ASIC data and other sources to create reports with added value.
For example, a report from an information broker may include information about the credit history of the company or business name you're dealing with.
Visit our website to find out more about ASIC approved information brokers and the services they offer.
Registered agents can use our online services to keep details of the companies they represent up to date.
Here's a few tips to keep in mind:
- you can get a list of the current account balances for all the companies you manage. Just log into your registered agent account and lodge a Company Debt Report (RA67). A minus ('-') sign before your balance number means that the company's account is in credit.
- when you're reconciling your payments, it can be hard to work out which payment is for which company. To make it simple, just look at the BPAY reference number. The BPAY reference number will always include the company's ACN.
- if you've lodged a form and made a mistake, it's easy to fix. Lodge a Request for Correction (Form 492) online, enter the details of the form you need to update, and explain what information you need to correct.
These are just a few examples of how agents can manage their companies online. Visit support for registered agents for more step-by-step guidance.
If you lodge a form and don't provide all the information, we might send it back to you to complete. This is what we refer to as a 'requisition'.
There are a few reasons why we might requisition a form:
- you haven't included an original signature or an effective date,
- you haven't answered all the questions, or
- you haven't included the required supporting documents.
In most cases, we will try to call you to correct the missing information over the phone. For this reason, it's important that you include the contact details of the person lodging the form.
However, if we can't contact you, or if the form requires your signature, we will return it.
If we send back a paper form, just complete the missing details and send it back to us. If you've lodged online, we'll ask you to complete a Notification of supplementary information (Form 902) that includes the missing details.
It's important to update your original form instead of submitting another one. If you submit a new form your company will have two forms lodged for the same thing.
When lodging a form, make sure you read it carefully, answer all the relevant questions, and include your supporting information. This helps us process your lodgement as quickly as possible.
The Business Exchange Fair is an initiative of the Global Cantonese Association of Australia that aims to foster closer economic ties between China, Hong Kong, Macau and Australia. The Exchange Fair provides opportunities to promote bilateral economic strengths and two-way investment, trade and development opportunities.
ASIC and the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will be in attendance and available to answer questions about corporate and tax regulation.
The Exchange Fair is being held at the Sydney International Convention Centre from February 16 to 18.
The next ATO Small Business Conversations will be held at the Greater City of Geelong Council on Tuesday February 21. This event will showcase the digital tools the ATO has available on their website to help small business.
ASIC and other government agencies, including Australian Financial Security Authority, Fair Work Ombudsman, AusIndustry and the Office of Victorian Small Business Commissioner will be attending this event and available to answer questions.