New wave of telephone and online scams – please be careful.

Over the last few days we’ve seen a resurgence of the “this is Microsoft” telephone call scam where the caller (usually from an Indian call centre) pretends to be from Microsoft – they 100% aren’t no matter how convincing they sound or what their website looks like – with news that they’ve been monitoring your computer and have found all sorts of problems with it.

They’ll take remote control if you let them, point out all sorts of fictitious errors then ask for payment in order to resolve them. One client was asked for £800.00 which is when they worked out that the call was in fact a scam.

Their computer is now with us for major repair due to damage caused by the software downloaded in the background while the scammers were in control. Thankfully no money was stolen.

The next one is a return of the Trojan software that pretends to be a legitimate website but then locks your computer and gives a telephone number to call in order to have it “fixed”. Again a scam, usually with a spoofed UK telephone number which will connect you to India when dialled.

If this happens to you, turn the computer off (hold the power button until it goes off) and take it to someone who knows how to properly fix it (preferably us). Your data and your money if you bank online are at serious risk is you see this on your screen.

The last one is new, and involves a call from “BT”. It isn’t and again appears to be from an Indian call centre. This time the story is that your router / hub has a public IP address instead of a private one which needs to be resolved otherwise data coming from and going to your devices can be intercepted and used by criminals.

This is just enough detail to confuse most people (if you ask nicely I can explain it to you) but is again the lead in to trying to initially get your email address. If you don’t give this out (please don’t) the thief will then ask for bank or online shopping details in order to “confirm the privacy of the IP address”.

This is of course nonsense and an attempt to steal your identity and / or money.

As ever if you get an unsolicited call from “Microsoft” – they won’t ring you, ever, under any circumstances – or “BT” or anyone else who wants personal or account details hang up at once.

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