Fake MS calls: be aware of this number and the obvious scam

April 6, 2016 at 09:08:13
Specs: El Capitane, .../lots...
Not sure where to put this for the benefit of those who may otherwise fall for the con/scam... So parking it here at least.

I post this for the benefit of those less knowledgable re' MS allegedly calling offering help. MS do not make unsolicited calls...

Just had a call from a chap (Asian - why are they so often Asian....?) claiming that "they" know my computer has been infected with a hacker virus; and asking me to spend a few minutes with him so he can help me resolve it. And of course his inevitable next step would have been a request to let him remote in...; and we know where that would led... Alleged he knows I've just logged into a Microsoft Server too. - which since I wasn't online just then clearly is B...S.

The number from which he called is 00151 55 10 105 (as shown on my call minder in the UK).

Naturally I didn't buy the story and advised him accordingly.

Be aware of the above number likely is just one of many these fakes/scammers use); and also again be aware that unsolicited offers of help over the phone, via email, popup messages etc. are trouble; and best ignored.

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April 6, 2016 at 09:37:05
The phone number is likely as fake as the call. The number is provided so you are more likely to answer.

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April 6, 2016 at 09:47:01
Good point... Sadly a lot of these con artists/scammers do trick the unwary into letting them onto their computers... My late Mum used to get calls saying she had a problem with her computer etc... I used to revel in leading them a while and then advising them that there wasn't a computer in the house (and there wasn't unless I was there with a Macbook...). She (at 96 even) was savvy enuf to tell them to she was't interested, and to go away, stop calling etc...

message edited by trvlr

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April 6, 2016 at 09:58:13
I've received many of these calls over the last five years or so.
Sometimes I try to keep them on the line as long as I can. When
I can, I ask where they are colling from. One claimed to be calling
from a town in Oklahoma, another from a suburb of New York City.
I'm pretty sure both were actually from India. One time the caller
told me he was in Goa (which is the smallest and most prosperous
state in India -- India's "Silicon Valley"), and another time she told
me she was in Mumbai.

I've followed their routine as far as installing and running the
remote control program (from a third party), but didn't give them
the password it generated which would allow them to control my
computer. One time I got a call when I had no computer, but faked
out the caller and his supervisor for 22 minutes, pretending to go
through all the steps of starting up the computer, connect to the
Internet, and go to the website he instructed me to go to.

-- Jeff, in Minneapolis

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April 7, 2016 at 09:21:07
I get them quite regularly, they are a pain. They can get very nasty if you say the wrong thing and (strangely) will often still stay on the phone even when they know you are wise to them. Maybe they get paid by the minute for trying to convince you.

At one time I used to play games with them but as they are criminals I guess the best bet is to just hang up.

Always pop back and let us know the outcome - thanks

message edited by Derek

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April 7, 2016 at 15:27:55
As mentioned, the calls are quite common here in the states, and call-blocking is generally of little use. Caller ID (also as it's called in the states) is easily spoofed, the perpetrators frequently change (spoofed) numbers, and the joke of the century is the government's "official" "DoNotCall" list. Easiest solution: don't answer the phone if you don't recognize the number on Caller ID, and turn your answering machine off if you really don't need it (it only confirms that they have a "live" number)....

"Channeling the spirit of jboy..."

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April 7, 2016 at 16:00:23
Yes, I agree not answering if you don't recognise the number; which is my usual polcy. On this occasion It appeared to be an "area code" which I recognised, and the first part of the number seemed familiar too... I missed the double zero... as in the UK there will be just one zero at start of any genuine UK number (or one masquarading as such).

We have legislation in the UK re' nuisance calls, especialy to numbers on the opt out list (telephone preference service - which lists all numbers registered which elected not to receive unsolicited calls). Trouble is it's almost a total waste time, and generally ignored... And just about all the con artists and spammers etc. originate from overseas - India frequently tops the list...

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