The Microsoft Telephone Scam

The MicrosoftTelephone ScamOver the past year I’ve had three or four calls from people claiming to be from Microsoft and telling me that I have a virus on my computer, luckily I’m internet savvy and know this is a scam by crooks, but for those that aren’t such calls can be more than just an annoyance…

The Microsoft telephone scam goes something like this, the crooks will inform you that they are calling from Microsoft and tell you that your computer has picked up a virus.

The scammers will then try to persuade you to grant them access to your PC via a remote access tool. If you agree, they’ll install malware to show you a list of fake infections. And then they’ll try to convince you to hand over your card details, so that they can fix the problem.

If you receive one of these unsolicited phone calls, hang up and do not download anything they ask you to.  And definitely don’t hand over your credit card details, just because someone mentions the well known name ‘Microsoft’.

The following is Microsoft’s advice, if ever a scammer calls you:

Be suspicious of unsolicited calls related to a security problem, even if they claim to represent a respected company.

Never provide personal information, such as credit card or bank details, to an unsolicited caller.

Do not go to a website, type anything into a computer, install software or follow any other instruction from someone who calls out of the blue.

Take the caller’s information down and pass it to the authorities.

Use up-to-date versions of Windows and application software.

Make sure security updates are installed regularly.

Use a strong password and change it regularly.

Make sure the firewall is turned on and that antivirus software is installed and up to date.

Microsoft advises anyone who thinks they may already have been a victim of a phone scam to do the following:

Change their computer’s password, change the password on their main email account and change the password for any financial accounts, especially bank and credit cards.

Scan their computer with the Microsoft Safety Scanner to find out if they have malware installed on their computer.

Contact their bank and credit card companies.


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