The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has warned small business operators and entrepreneurs to beware of unauthorised websites offering easy access to government grants.

It said that despite the appearance of some websites, they are not lending a hand to small businesses but are doing the opposite.

“In fact some sites will charge a fee to access government grants which can be normally accessed for free. In other cases the small business may pay the fee only to find they are not eligible for a particular grant,” the ACCC said in a statement.

The ACCC is also concerned that some overseas-based websites falsely give the impression that they are endorsed by the Australian Government.

The Australian Business Funding Centre (ABFC) is an example of a website which looks like it has some kind of Australian Government affiliation or official status.

“Official sounding names and web addresses are often used to draw unsuspecting people to questionable websites,” the ACCC said.

Official information about grants is freely available to the public in a readily searchable form at or via

The ACCC said there has been an increase in scams impersonating government departments or major businesses.