Two women, one name, and the $11k super swap
A woman says she's had to change her name after authorities repeatedly confused her with a stranger with whom she shared a name and a birthday.
Skylar Atwood was born Jessica Taylor on January 9, 1992, as was another Jessica Taylor whom Skylar now lives just 50km away from.
Two years ago, Skylar started getting strange calls from finance companies, stating she had a different email with a different name.
"I went to look at my super in my mygov account and tried to merge them all together," she said.
"After I did the merge, my account closed and it disappeared.
Skylar said $11,000 worth of her super went to the other Jessica.
"Just under $11,000 of superannuation being rolled into my account would be an issue," that second Jessica said.
This Jessica asked not to be identified on camera, claiming her privacy had already been damaged.
"They go on about how they're so big on privacy and keeping all your details private and, yep, this happens," she said.
Jo Ucukalo from Handle My Complaint is trying to help both women sort out the mess.
"When speaking with these ladies, we've discovered that they've both got matching tax debts of $7000," she said.
"This is a real signal there is a problem with the government data."
Frustrated, Skylar changed to her current name, but even that got confused, when her new Medicare card with her new name was sent to the other Jessica.
"It's ridiculous, I'm over it," she said.
Bond University data science professor Steven Stern said such coincidences happened "quite frequently", but went unnoticed until problems arose.
"The real interesting thing of this is once a mix-up has happened, unfortunately it is actually harder to get it out of the system than you might think," he said.
A spokesman for the Australian Tax Office said they could not comment on the tax affairs of any individual.
Department of Human Services general manager Hank Jongen said the Medicare mistake was a "unique situation that occurred as a result of human error".
"We are deeply sorry for this breakdown in service," he said.
© Nine Digital Pty Ltd 2019