Computer tech support scam targets British Columbians

Computer tech support scam targets British Columbians

Ministry of Justice

Consumer Protection BC

VICTORIA – For several months, phone scammers have been targeting British Columbians by pretending to be with a reputable computer software  company, asking to perform urgent software updates and requesting hundreds of dollars as a fee for their service.

In response to this and other frauds, the Province and Consumer Protection BC are teaming up during Fraud Prevention Month to provide tips to help British Columbians fraud-proof themselves.

Fraud Prevention Month is a national initiative with the goal of fighting fraud aimed at businesses and consumers. This phone scam is a prevalent one. The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre says it currently accounts for 70 per cent of all fraud complaints in Canada.

The phone scam works like this: Tom, a B.C. resident, receives a phone call at dinner time. The caller explains he is from ‘Microsoft Tech Support’. He asks Tom whether his computer is running slowly and encourages him to download software right away to fix his computer. Tom has found that his system has been sluggish lately so he follows the caller’s instructions and bills the new ‘software’ to his credit card.

The total bill is in the hundreds of dollars.

Unfortunately, Tom has been scammed and has installed spyware, or malware, on his computer. The corrupt program can potentially monitor what he is typing on his computer, including personal information like banking details and passwords.

Here are some tips to protect you and your family from becoming a victim of this ‘virus-fixing’ scheme:

* If you receive one of these unsolicited phone calls, hang up and do not download anything onto your computer.

* Do your research and ask questions around all unsolicited phone calls.

* Get the name, phone number and website address of any company that calls you. Check to see if it is a legitimate company or if a real company’s name is being used as part of a scam. The Internet has a great deal of useful information on scam avoidance.

* Do not provide any personal information, especially your credit card number.

* To stay informed about possible scams and to warn others:

Visit Consumer Protection BC on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/ConsumerProtectionBC

o Report any fraudulent activity to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre by

calling 1 888 495-8501.

* Know your rights! If you have questions about your rights and

responsibilities as a B.C. consumer, please contact Consumer Protection

BC, toll-free at 1 888 564-9963 or online at: www.consumerprotectionbc.ca

 

 

Just Posted

A Heffley Creek peacock caught not one - but two - lifts on a logging truck this month. (Photo submitted)
Heffley Creek-area peacock hops logging trucks in search of love

Peacock hitched two lifts in the past month

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Second dose vaccinations accelerating throughout region: Interior Health

To date, more than 675,000 doses have been administered throughout the region

Okanagan Lake (File photo)
Thompson-Okanagan ready to welcome back tourists

The Thompson-Okanagan Tourism Association expects this summer to be a busy one

..
Four Paws Food Bank-Barriere helps area pet owners

Leia Kett (as in Star War’s Princess Leia) has been a Barriere… Continue reading

Barriere resident Donna Genier was happy to be able to gather with a small group of family and close friends to play a game of scrub last Sunday at the Barriere ball fields in memory of her youngest son Kurt Genier. Kurt passed unexpectedly in 2014 Since then, starting in 2015 an annual Memorial Slow Pitch Baseball Tournament has been held in Barriere to remember the young man who loved to play baseball. Unfortunately, the tourney had to be cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic. (Elli Kohnert photo)
Kurt Genier remembered with ball game in Barriere

The annual Kurt Genier Memorial Slow Pitch Ball Tournament was not able… Continue reading

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on Friday, February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
U.S. border restrictions to remain in place until at least July 21

Safety minister says Canada, U.S. extending restrictions on non-essential international travel

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

The first suspension bridge is the tallest in Canada, with a second suspension bridge just below it. The two are connected by a trail that’s just over 1 km. (Claire Palmer photo)
PHOTOS: The highest suspension bridges in Canada just opened in B.C.

The Skybridge in Golden allows visitors to take in views standing at 130 and 80 metres

BC Green Party leader and Cowichan Valley MLA Sonia Furstenau introduced a petition to the provincial legislature on Thursday calling for the end of old-growth logging in the province. (File photo)
BC Green leader Furstenau introduces old-growth logging petition

Party calls for the end of old-growth logging as protests in Fairy Creek continue

B.C. Premier John Horgan leaves his office for a news conference in the legislature rose garden, June 3, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. premier roasted for office budget, taxing COVID-19 benefits

Youth addiction law that triggered election hasn’t appeared

A vial containing the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is shown at a vaccination site in Marcq en Baroeul, outside Lille, northern France, Saturday, March 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michel Spingler
mRNA vaccines ‘preferred’ for all Canadians, including as 2nd dose after AstraZeneca: NACI

New recommendations prioritizes Pfizer, Moderna in almost all cases

Most Read