Microsoft telephone scam hits computer owners again

Never give out personal or financial information over the phone as you never know how that information will be used

A well known ploy to pilfer your pennies has recently reared its ugly head again in the Interior of B.C., as police say they have received a number of reports of the so-called Microsoft scam.

The scam consists of a cold-call from a person claiming to represent a well-known brand, such as Microsoft, who then proceeds to tell the victim they are checking into a computer problem, infection or virus that has been detected on their computer.

The scammer gets the victim to give up remote access to the their computer and will then spend some time on the computer trying to demonstrate where the ‘problems’ are in order to convince the victim to pay a fee (usually hundreds of dollars) for a service that will ‘fix’ the computer.

While there is probably nothing wrong with their computer, the scammer has tricked the person into believing a problem exists. This leads to your credit card information being compromised as it is given to the scammer. In some cases, the ‘service’ they offer may even be the installation of malware or spyware, making your computer a fountain of information for them.

Police have received at least four reports of this scam over the past few days. The callers have been using very aggressive tactics and have even called back multiple times.

Do not give in to their fraud as you will only be out the cash you paid for the phoney service.

Never give out personal or financial information over the phone as you never know how that information will be used. And never allow someone you don’t know to have remote access to your computer, no matter how legitimate their sales pitch sounds!

For more information on frauds or to report, please go to www.antifraudcentre.ca