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Warning: Online PC care scam

(17 Posts)
Lindax Fri 08-Jul-11 20:09:21

just had a call tonight from a guy from India who knew my first name, surname and gave a credible story about my PC being slow and windows sending error files to Microsoft and they have seen the errors and would help me clear this up.

He talked me through looking at various things on the PC and then asked my to go to an internet site WINDOWSONLINECARE.CO.UK and instructed me to click on an icon there. I refused as I didnt know who there were.

Good thing I did as it is a scam to get onto your PC details here

They even phoned back about 10 minutes later to try try again - I wasnt very polite angry

Dont think anything has happened to my PC as I only went to the website and never clicked on the icon to give them access - anyone techy out there who thinks I've got a problem let me know.

Ponders Fri 08-Jul-11 20:28:19

this has been going on for years hmm

it's fun to tell them you haven't got a computer wink

franke Sat 09-Jul-11 09:41:01

I just came on to start a post about this. My mum got scammed by similar a couple of days ago. My question is what should she now do to find out if they've left anything on her computer? She only uses it for email and skype, no banking or shopping or anything so I don't think she's particularly exposed but even so...

Ponders Sat 09-Jul-11 10:01:38

did she pay them anything, franke? I thought it was more about money than eg viruses or trojans?

franke Sat 09-Jul-11 10:23:44

yes, she did blush I'm hoping that is the end of it, although I guess she should get it checked out for keylogger stuff (I have no idea what I'm talking about, can you tell smile)

Ponders Sat 09-Jul-11 10:51:48

Might be a good idea to stop the card she paid them with hmm

I don't think she needs to worry about her computer though...

Ponders Sat 09-Jul-11 10:55:06

Guardian piece from last year

it does say 'the owner has given a complete stranger access to every piece of data on their machine' but doesn't explain what to do about it confused

Ponders Sat 09-Jul-11 11:08:29

from a Microsoft forum:

'Hi I fell really stupid I fell for this scam and paid ?145 thru paypal for 2 years support. they have since sent emails and a website I will now do the security check as their technician did conduct some cleaning of my computer but I am conerned if they also copied key lists form my machine. I have since changed all finanical passwords. This scam needs to be stopped I am normally very cautious but they caught me off guard and "proved" I had serious problems with my new laptop. Is it possible they can still login to my machine?

Sorry to hear you fell for it.
Yes, it's possible. Almost the only thing you can do at this point to
be sure you are safe is to reinstall Windows cleanly and change all
your user-ids and passwords everywhere.
Yes, it's a lot of work, but you don't have other good choices.'

franke Sat 09-Jul-11 14:34:30

Thanks for all this Ponders. I've sent the Guardian piece to my mum. Thankfully she cancelled the card - she won't get anything back though as it was a debit card. My brother who's quite computer savvy has been and looked at her computer today and seems to think all is well.

I'm exasperated at how naive she's been, but she's a 78yo who is clueless about all this stuff. I'm really angry for her.

Lindax Sat 09-Jul-11 15:06:21

my dad just got a phone call with the same thing!!!!!!!!!!!! Less than 24hrs later - coincidence?

franke Sat 09-Jul-11 15:09:17

Does your dad live near you Lindax? I read somewhere that they probably have a phone book for a certain area and systematically go through it, striking lucky once in a while. What did he say to them?

RustyBear Sat 09-Jul-11 18:00:39

I got them this morning - I've had several under various company names. Sometimes I hang up straight away, sometimes I string them along a bit to see what they say, this morning I was a bit pissed off because he'd got me out of bed, so I just told him I didn't have Windows and he hung up.

Even if you've only gone on the website & not clicked any links I would run a check with something like Malwarebytes, as it is possible for spyware to get on a computer just from a website visit. I haven't personally seen any viruses just from visiting, but tbh, I wouldn't rule anything out, new nasty stuff is being developed all the time.

NetworkGuy Sun 10-Jul-11 14:08:13

"but she's a 78yo who is clueless about all this stuff."

I would hope that most 'silver surfers' would say "I will get my son/daughter to check it thank you".

I'm sorry your mum was caught out. I suspect even mine might have been if someone rang and she was online at the time.

The other scam that appears to be widespread is that of ringing to say that your Sky box or Dyson needs servicing. Low cost of say 15 to 30 pounds, until they 'find' things that they claim need doing.

With so many homes having a Dyson or using Sky, they have a good chance of a hit, just the same as lots having Windows machines. If they rang me I'd first ask 'what version of Windows am I using' (XP) but could equally tell them 'I am using an Apple iMac' smile

Naoko Sun 10-Jul-11 19:03:17

These guys are awful. Several of my friends had similar phone calls last year. In two cases they kept ringing back despite getting hung up on, and one got very threatening and told my friend he would call the police on him if he didn't pay, because his computer was a danger, then when my friend put the phone down he rang back three more times! shock My friend is young and assertive and computer savvy, but if that'd happened to an elder or more clueless person... My friend actually called the police. They were grateful, said they'd had a few more reports, and they wanted to know it was going on in the area - so might be an idea to report it if this happens to you.

susanjames Sat 31-Jan-15 15:43:46

They're still at it

This is war. Gird your loins. Prepare yourselves Citizens of the United Kingdom (and US of A)
A strategic approach is critical to success.
1.Turn off your computer for added smugness
2You act confused and anxious (find your inner Meryl Streep, we all have one somewhere)
3. You follow the instructions of the oik. He rejoices, he has got his rupee, he has netted you but his English has now reached its zenith. He passes you to his supervisor.
4. The warm up is complete, this saviour of your computer will now take you smoothly to your doom – emptying your bank account anyway. Let’s go -
Hang on! you plead, you still don’t understand, what key, what box? Trouble is your computer is off but don’t panic, by now your are a whimpering, baffled 95 year old whose hearing and anxiety makes her require instructions to be repeated frequently and slowly.
5. This can only last so long, we reach a make or break critical point, it is here you may make your biggest mistake, you may laugh, offer some expletive or loose character. Be strong, the supervisor still has the smallest hope that you are the nadir of the Indian Windows techie scam – you have dementia.
6. By a combination of tears, shock and whatever else you can summon give him HOPE.
7It’snow been about 15 minutes, he is shouting ‘is you computer on? Are you joking me? And the ultimate joy; You are wasting my time you (standard Anglo Saxon expletives).
8. It’s over. The phone in some crowded little Mumbai backstreet is slammed down. For 15 minutes you have saved Mrs Isittimeformycupofteayet in Upper Slaughter from having her life savings extricated from her bank account and the remainder of her life ruined.
Job Well Done.

NetworkGuy Sat 31-Jan-15 20:52:08

Your strategic approach may be better followed (esp by any 'silver surfers') if you had considered adding in a few blank lines, so each point starts after a blank line and can be seen separately (some people may use screen magnifiers, or could print it out and read it {more easily}) that way.

Just sayin...

cozietoesie Sun 01-Feb-15 22:13:18

I got one the other day and started laughing so hard that the guy put the phone down on me. I never got a chance to use my best lines!

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