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#656009 - Fri Sep 23 2011 05:10 PM A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer?
agony Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sat Mar 29 2003
Posts: 12907
Loc: Western Canada
Just got a phone call from someone saying he was calling from Microsoft, and that my computer was downloading lots of junk. I said "But I'm not having any problems with my computer" and he said, "You won't be able to detect this problem. Now, please turn on your computer". I said "No, I don't think I will" and hung up. I got another call very similar, a few days ago. Both callers had extremely heavy accents and the line was quite poor - I could only catch about half of what they said.

Is there any chance that this is legit? It's setting off all my "scam" alarm bells, but who knows, maybe I'm just not up on how they do things these days.

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#656014 - Fri Sep 23 2011 05:33 PM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: agony]
ladymacb29 Offline
Moderator

Registered: Wed Mar 15 2000
Posts: 15702
Loc: The Delta Quadrant
I don't think this is legit - Microsoft shouldn't have access to what your computer is/is not downloading.
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#656016 - Fri Sep 23 2011 05:51 PM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: ladymacb29]
Tizzabelle Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Sun Jan 17 2010
Posts: 2507
Loc: Sydney NSW Australia         
This sounds like a scam a friend of a friend was caught in. He got the same sort of call and became worried about his computer. He gave them his credit card account numbers, bank acct details including passwords. He's a smart man but was worried about his computer and lost his head at the time. An hour or so later the penny dropped and he rang the police and the banks. Nothing was taken in the short amount of time but everyone concluded he'd been scammed. I think you did the right thing agony. smile A friend of mine got the same sort of call as you did but her computer wasn't on at the time. She played along with them and asked if they could see what it was downloading at that precise moment. They told her they could see it was full of viruses and trojan horses. She told them it was interesting but nigh on impossible as her computer wasn't even turned on at the time. wink

As soon as an unsolicited call asks for any sort of personal details it's time to hang up. Or if you do think it might be legit and you might be interested, ask them for a number you can call them on. No phone number? Has to be a con. They give you a phone number? Check it in online. Any decent sort of company or organisation such as a charity will have a website now. You can ring them to ask if they have been soliciting information, donations etc.
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#656025 - Fri Sep 23 2011 07:09 PM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: Tizzabelle]
pyonir Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Sat Apr 25 2009
Posts: 872
Loc: Minnesota USA

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#656102 - Sat Sep 24 2011 01:41 AM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: pyonir]
romeomikegolf Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Wed Apr 07 2004
Posts: 4875
Loc: Rothwell Northants England UK 
No reputable company would cold call you like that, and they certainly couldn't know that you may have malicious software on your PC. Microsoft wouldn't hold your personal details either, unless you bought something from their web site. We get stuff like this happening a lot because companies sell their customer lists to each other for marketing purposes. One such thing in the UK is car insurance firms selling on their lists, and accident claim details, to personal injury claim companies.
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Would the last person to leave the planet please turn off the lights.

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#656136 - Sat Sep 24 2011 06:27 AM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: romeomikegolf]
agony Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sat Mar 29 2003
Posts: 12907
Loc: Western Canada
Thanks for those links, pyonir. That sounds exactly like the calls I've gotten.

Good to know that my inbuilt scam detectors are still working.

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#656137 - Sat Sep 24 2011 06:27 AM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: romeomikegolf]
glendathecat Offline
Explorer

Registered: Wed Apr 02 2008
Posts: 92
Loc: Kent UK
I get these regularly and occasionally now have fun with them. I kept the last caller on the line for a few minutes asking questions about how Microsoft had my details and what a wonderful service they were providing etc etc. When he finally got back to his original lead in question - 'Has your computer had any problems recently?' - I told him that we'd assume for the purpose of the conversation that it had. At which point he said, "F*** off. Go away." and hung up. I tell you, it's a wonderful feeling winding a scammer up to that degree.

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#656184 - Sat Sep 24 2011 10:32 AM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: glendathecat]
Verbonica Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Tue May 16 2006
Posts: 260
Loc: Napa Valley California USA
Yes, glendathecat, it can be fun to toy with them. A while back I kept one of them on the line for at least 45 minutes as I played along and acted real dumb. At one point I even told him to hold while I went and looked for my credit card -- I put down the phone and went and cleaned my kitchen, came back, and he was still there! Then, I told him to hold on again so I could call my son to see if he had my credit card -- he still held on! I finally told him that I had been declared incompetent and that all of my financial decisions had been taken away.

A tiny bit of angst that his thugs would show up at my door, but I was pretty sure that this guy was calling from somewhere in Africa. I guess I saved around 10 other people from being called by keeping him tied up smile

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#656190 - Sat Sep 24 2011 10:56 AM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: Verbonica]
ladymacb29 Offline
Moderator

Registered: Wed Mar 15 2000
Posts: 15702
Loc: The Delta Quadrant
Verbonica - wow!!
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"Without the darkness, how would we see the light?" ~ Tuvok

Editor for Television Category

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#656255 - Sat Sep 24 2011 04:31 PM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: ladymacb29]
flopsymopsy Offline
Moderator

Registered: Sat May 17 2008
Posts: 3528
Loc: Northampton England UK      
LOL @ Verbonica. Next time please clean my kitchen... round trip should only take a few days. wink
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#656295 - Sat Sep 24 2011 08:29 PM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: flopsymopsy]
Barbarini Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Sat Sep 04 2010
Posts: 372
Loc: Alberta Canada
Thanks for your post agony...I got the same call myself today so I appreciate the head's up. I NEVER answer questions on the phone and usually politely say I'm not interested but I asked this guy if he thought I was stupid, told him I knew it was a scam and not to call back. All the while, he kept trying to convince me the call was for real. Sheesh... They're obviously working their way east. eek I wish I'd thought of cleaning the house Verbonica...brilliant! There's always next time <<<she says rubbing her hands together in glee!!> grin

A pox on their houses! mad

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#656297 - Sat Sep 24 2011 08:53 PM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: Barbarini]
Emma058 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Tue Apr 24 2007
Posts: 306
Loc: Ontario Canada
They are preying on Ontarians also.

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#656298 - Sat Sep 24 2011 08:56 PM Re: A Scam? Or something wrong with my computer? [Re: Emma058]
Emma058 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Tue Apr 24 2007
Posts: 306
Loc: Ontario Canada

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Moderator:  flopsymopsy, ladymacb29