Microsoft Scammers "fixing computers" once again

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams fox cities #1 in Forest Land Mgmt

Microsoft Scammers "fixing computers" once again 

Well after getting three calls from these helpful hackers this week I think that it may be a good time to revive an old post that I wrote a few years ago.

I hope none of you fell for this crew of helpful hackers when they called to offer you a little bit of assistance.
If you did then this would be a good time to cancel all of your credit cards and change all of your paswords.

 

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Microsoft is hiring people to help fix my computer, or is it my bank account?

 

  I got a few calls lately from a fellow who was barely understandable due to an extreme accent, saying something about being hired by Microsoft to fix my computer.

 

  Apparently he had some type of knowledge that my computer had been infected by a virus that all of the virus checking software could not detect, but Microsoft knew that I had it.

 

    If you are going to run a scam, rule #1, dont say that you are working for Microsoft, anyone who has windows knows that although they make great software, they never answer the phone, and certainly wouldnt be out calling the public to warn them or help them with a computer problem.

 

  The first time he called about a month ago I was rather busy so I asked him if he thought that I was crazy or just an idiot, which prompted another round of jabbering something that I could not understand before I hung up.

 

  Well this past week, he called again, this time I was ready for a distraction and a bit of fun.

 

  So I listened very carefully and asked him to repeat a lot of things until I could figure out what he was talking about, knowing that the more time he spent on the phone with me would be saving some nieve fool from getting ripped today.

 

  Eventually he walked me through how to look at the event log in the windows registry, I dont reccommend that you let a con-man take you into the system of your computer unless you are very good a knowing what can be harmed and how.

 

  While in the event log, we found many instances of warnings and errors (they are always there), of course he used these as evidence of my computer being infected, as he had said from the beginning.

 

  Next he wanted me to go to the run menu and punch in a web address where my problems could be fixed.

 

  Well now that he finally gave me some true identity info on himself (his web address), now it was time to play dumb while he thought I was doing the foolish things that he was telling me, I was googling his web address.

 

  As I suspected, it was a phishing scam, asking me to allow them access to my computer's system so that their techicians could clean out my virus problems.  More likely so that their technicians could clean out my bank account and then go for a bit of identity theft.

 

  I could only imagine the look on his face when I told him that the FBI had a warning out on their company and would be making arrests soon and that he should start running Now.

 

  Unfazed, he went on to send me to several websites that he thought would convince me that they were legitimate, unfortunately for him, everytime that he gave me a website, instead of typing it into the address bar, I typed it into google where instead of the glowing praise that was probably on the sites they had set up, I found more warnings about their company.

 

  Eventually, after reading a half dozen of these warnings to him, he finally hung up the phone, hopefully to start fleeing from the FBI, but probably on to the next mark on his call list, hopefully the next one will waste some more of his time, and not be an easy victim.

 

  With the amount of time and effort that they spent on me, and no doubt thousands of others, I wonder how much they need to steal from the few marks that they actually fool into doing their bidding in order to make a living at this.

 

picture credit

  • https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ by Don Hankins http://www.flickr.com/photos/23905174@N00/2524306151
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Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Real Estate 01/09/2017 07:00 AM
  2. William Feela 01/05/2017 01:39 PM
Topic:
Local News and Events
Location:
Wisconsin
Groups:
Technology Side of Active Rain
Bananatude
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Rainmaker
1,175,545
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

I received a call just yesterday on my home phone. The person said, "HI! How are you today?" and I said, "How can I help you?" and he said, "I'm (whoever) and your Microsoft computer has..." and I interrupted him, and said, "Yeah, ok, have a good day" and I hung up.

First of all, I don't even HAVE a Microsoft computer anymore, and second of all, tech support will NEVER call and volunteer to help. 

Thanks for the reminder to be vigilant!

Jan 04, 2017 03:26 AM #1
Rainmaker
2,438,963
James Dray
Fathom Realty AR LLC - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

Good morning Bob.  We had the same issue however, I wrote about what happend a month or so ago.  they haven't called back. 

Jan 04, 2017 04:30 AM #2
Rainmaker
1,454,620
Gary L. Waters, Broker Owner, Waters Realty of Brevard, LLC
Waters Realty of Brevard, LLC - Rockledge, FL
... a small office, delivering big service!

I ahve only had one of these calls before but I played along with entirely fake answers. Eventually I sat the phone down and walked away.

Jan 04, 2017 05:05 AM #3
Rainmaker
1,522,697
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Bob -  I have not gotten called but a rash of inquiries to my site with nonsense with email addresses from Russia.

Jan 04, 2017 05:17 AM #4
Rainmaker
1,425,105
Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
Realty National - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

Perhaps it is just me, Bob Crane  , but when I see a call coming in from an unexpected area, I do not answer my telephone, but then immediately Google the number and 99% of the time, it is a known scam number so it is blocked immediately. I don't need the aggravation!

Jan 04, 2017 05:56 AM #5
Rainmaker
1,406,473
Yolanda Cordova-Gilbert
Sitterle Homes - Richmond, TX
Sitterle Homes

Bob,

 Happy New Year to you and these scammers always amaze me at how stupid they think people are if they would only use their brain for something productive!

Jan 04, 2017 12:39 PM #6
Ambassador
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Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

Microsoft never proactively calls anyone.  Nor does the IRS.  If you need help from Microsot, you have to call them.  If the IRS is after you, registered mail is how you'll likely hear about it.

Jan 04, 2017 01:39 PM #7
Rainmaker
3,588,599
William Feela
WHISPERING PINES REALTY - North Branch, MN
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

I had a couple of these calls since the 1st of the year.  I start screaming at them until they hang up

Jan 04, 2017 05:05 PM #8
Rainmaker
2,157,224
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

I was plagued with those scammer phone calls much of 2016.  I was relieved to hear they had caught a bunch of them.  I'm sorry to hear they are back!

Jan 04, 2017 05:29 PM #9
Rainer
216,650
Sally Crane
WMS - Unity, WI
Woodland appraisal support.

These calls are very frustrating!  Unfortunately, many do fall victim to these, or they would have no reason to keep calling us.

Jan 04, 2017 10:00 PM #10
Ambassador
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Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Real Estate
John L Scott Market Center - Birkenfeld, OR
"Your Local Expert!" 503-755-2905

Bob, I didn't get a call, but DID get a pop-up that froze my computer. I freaked out a bit, as it listed all of the problems I would have if I didn't call them. I called, and took lots of notes. They are "ransom hijackers" and to the tune of $577 and a lifetime "guarantee" against viruses, for another $199 they would certainly fix all of the 1056 warnings, and what-not I had on my computer. Yes, foreign accents, from PA and Texas, I believe, or FLA, can't recall as I talked to several of their people. My instincts were telling me (along with my fast-paced heart rythmn) that this was NOT right. I succumbed, but within minutes called an IT guy that works for my husband and he said, "Quick, turn off your computer!" I did. They didn't encrypt any of my files, or damage my other laptop "stuff", thankfully. I did find out that a good friend actually went ahead and paid them and it was ALL BAD. 

They even sent a Fed EX guy to pick up my "check", and after I told him what happened, he wrote that this was a scam pickup or somesuch, so that they were aware of this as well. I plan to re-blog this soon. Thank you for bringing back this post of yours!

 

Jan 05, 2017 11:28 AM #11
Ambassador
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Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams fox cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

I am so glad that they did not win this time Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Realtor (503)755-2905 , it pays to be prepared for this ransomware. I know of some who have been hit by it and just dump the computer and go to their backups to get back to business.

Jan 05, 2017 05:03 PM #12
Rainmaker
570,010
Vern Eaton
Askov, MN
Realtor 651-674-7449

Thnaks for the heads up.  I had not heard from them in months and thought they gave up

Jan 06, 2017 08:07 AM #13
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Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad

Thanks for the warning, Bob. I haven't had this happen...yet. It helps to spread the word about the kinds of scams that are out there!

Jeff

Jan 09, 2017 07:14 AM #14
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Ed Silva
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Most likely he won't worry about the FBI as they are probably in some 3rd world country.  Everyone knows Microsoft is almost impossible to reach except through their service site

Jan 09, 2017 07:16 AM #15
Rainmaker
3,729,421
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

Bob,

No calls, but we did get notices on our Macs that our computer was corrupted...we called Apple!  They told it was a scam!  Wishing you a wonderful week.  A

Jan 09, 2017 07:25 AM #16
Rainmaker
69,296
Alesha A. Wilson, M.Ed., MRP
Buy and Sell Oklahoma LLC - Edmond, OK
Buy and Sell with Confidence

Hi Bob Crane.   Very imformative and entertaining at the same time.  Was reminded of some of my favorite Seinfeld moments ~ when he answers the phone & comes up with witty responses (:  Thank you for looking out for us!

Jan 09, 2017 01:22 PM #17
Rainmaker
1,388,189
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
your real estate writer

I've gotten a few of these calls lately - the most recent late yesterday evening. As soon as they say they're from Microsoft I hang up.

Jan 09, 2017 01:39 PM #18
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