Beware phone offers to fix your computer

Daily Echo: Beware phone offers to fix your computer Beware phone offers to fix your computer

A HAMPSHIRE firm is warning businesses and private computer users to be on their guard after a rise in reports of a scam by cyber criminals offering to fix computer viruses.

Fareham-based Taylor Made Computer Solutions is seeing an increase in complaints across the country from people who have fallen victim to the scam which involves people pretending to be Microsoft employees.

The caller claims to work for Windows or Microsoft and says they have detected a virus or “issues” with the victim’s computer and requests access to the machine. Once in they are then free to steal personal information or install software that allows them to control the computer remotely.

The scammers, who are thought to be operating from India, are thought to have ripped off tens of thousands of people across the world.

Matt Takhar, software development manager at Taylor Made, pictured, said: “We are hearing of more and more cases of this scam in Hampshire, with people getting scary calls from abroad about their computer’s vulnerability to viruses.

They can sound very credible, even though it’s complete nonsense. It’s a really unpleasant scam but, thankfully, very straightforward to avoid.

“People store all sorts of personal and financial information on computers and, once you let them in the scammers will have access to all of it. If you bank online, or do internet shopping, they could help themselves to your accounts.”

US-based Microsoft has issued advice to the public about the scam and say they would never call the public and offer technical support in a “cold call way”.

They say cyber criminals often use publicly available phone directories so they might know your name and other personal information when they call and then simply guess what operating system you’re using.

Tips to avoid falling victim to the scam:

  • Never give personal, financial or computer log-in details to anyone you don’t know and trust.
  • Never buy software or technical support services over the phone.
  • Never give control of your computer to a third party unless you know and trust them.
  • Hang up immediately and report all scam calls to the police.

Comments (9)

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12:59pm Mon 24 Dec 12

CHARLIE TAYLOR says...

Has been going on in Zante Greece for about two years ! think there based in India !
Has been going on in Zante Greece for about two years ! think there based in India ! CHARLIE TAYLOR
  • Score: 0

1:29pm Mon 24 Dec 12

southy says...

Its been happen on Skype for just over a year now.
Its been happen on Skype for just over a year now. southy
  • Score: 0

2:51pm Mon 24 Dec 12

boilerman says...

Ive had a number of these calls, I kept an Indian sounding guy on the phone for ages the other day.
He told me his name was Martin Anderson, I asked for his number as I wanted to report him, he gave me back my number than argued with me that it was his.
Like I said I played him along for ages ,in the end he gave up.
What is worrying though is he did have my make of computer and it's serial number.
Please beware.
Ive had a number of these calls, I kept an Indian sounding guy on the phone for ages the other day. He told me his name was Martin Anderson, I asked for his number as I wanted to report him, he gave me back my number than argued with me that it was his. Like I said I played him along for ages ,in the end he gave up. What is worrying though is he did have my make of computer and it's serial number. Please beware. boilerman
  • Score: 0

4:10pm Mon 24 Dec 12

simaster says...

Is this news or just another paid for ad made to look like news....
Is this news or just another paid for ad made to look like news.... simaster
  • Score: 0

6:14pm Mon 24 Dec 12

IronLady2010 says...

southy wrote:
Its been happen on Skype for just over a year now.
You're behind the times Southy, this scam has been going on for years!
[quote][p][bold]southy[/bold] wrote: Its been happen on Skype for just over a year now.[/p][/quote]You're behind the times Southy, this scam has been going on for years! IronLady2010
  • Score: 0

6:25pm Mon 24 Dec 12

MGRA says...

I had a call earlier in the year,,,, I just fed the guy a load of lies about my information... he started getting agitated ! it was hilarious... he kept saying " no this information can not be correct" and I kept saying "yes it is you idiot, what is wrong with you?"... in the end he hung up.
I had a call earlier in the year,,,, I just fed the guy a load of lies about my information... he started getting agitated ! it was hilarious... he kept saying " no this information can not be correct" and I kept saying "yes it is you idiot, what is wrong with you?"... in the end he hung up. MGRA
  • Score: 0

7:34pm Mon 24 Dec 12

The Wickham Man says...

boilerman wrote:
Ive had a number of these calls, I kept an Indian sounding guy on the phone for ages the other day.
He told me his name was Martin Anderson, I asked for his number as I wanted to report him, he gave me back my number than argued with me that it was his.
Like I said I played him along for ages ,in the end he gave up.
What is worrying though is he did have my make of computer and it's serial number.
Please beware.
I take the same approach Boilerman.I've noticed they try and gain confidence by pretending to check details on your machine and quoting them back at you. Beware - the figures and strings they quote back at you are common to every PC!!
[quote][p][bold]boilerman[/bold] wrote: Ive had a number of these calls, I kept an Indian sounding guy on the phone for ages the other day. He told me his name was Martin Anderson, I asked for his number as I wanted to report him, he gave me back my number than argued with me that it was his. Like I said I played him along for ages ,in the end he gave up. What is worrying though is he did have my make of computer and it's serial number. Please beware.[/p][/quote]I take the same approach Boilerman.I've noticed they try and gain confidence by pretending to check details on your machine and quoting them back at you. Beware - the figures and strings they quote back at you are common to every PC!! The Wickham Man
  • Score: 0

9:23pm Mon 24 Dec 12

bazzeroz says...

Oh how I would love to scam the scammers. Bit of their own medicine would go down well.
Oh how I would love to scam the scammers. Bit of their own medicine would go down well. bazzeroz
  • Score: 0

10:50pm Mon 24 Dec 12

Turtlebay says...

Just tell them you have Linux. They hang up immediately!
Just tell them you have Linux. They hang up immediately! Turtlebay
  • Score: 0

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