Computer scam fleeces elderly

AN ELABORATE computer scam circulating the country has cost one elderly man a whopping $454, and it is still unknown exactly what damage has been done to his computer.

The 88-year-old Nambucca Heads man received a phone call last week from ‘Midas PC Touch’ who claimed to be working on behalf of Microsoft. The caller raised a false alarm that his computer had been hacked or infected with malware and claimed they were able to fix the problem on the spot, however a fee for the service must be paid and remote access would need to be granted … but as a result he would have a two-year security from hackers. 

“Dad said the caller was very pushy and just kept prodding. He was so confused when he rang me and told me he had to pay a lot of money to get his computer fixed,” the man’s daughter told the Guardian.

“… I knew he’d been scammed. 

“We’re working together with the bank to see what can be done to get the money back. His card has been cancelled and all his passwords changed.

“They rang again on Monday claiming it was a Microsoft representative and that his Microsoft licence number was being used by other parties.

“I told dad to give them my number and to call me.”

The number in question was from the UK, however the caller said he was located in Sydney.

“I questioned him about where he was calling from and he said they use satellite phones so it bounces off the nearest satellite,” she said.

“He got very aggressive when I continued to question him and when I asked about the supposed protection his company had given my father last week, and the fact we were still waiting on the promised refund - he hung up.”

Further emails have been sent requesting call-backs and a complete refund.

“It’s really complex – because they sent a couple of confirmation emails, have a website and a support address and number you can lodge tickets too, but nothing else to show for the money spent,” she said.

“It’s a very elaborate scam - I’m completely disgusted by the lengths these people go to, targeting the elderly like that ... and for them to have the nerve to call again and try to scam more money from dad.”

Microsoft have been notified and said they would never call regarding an issue unless it was to return a phonecall inquiry made by a customer.

SCAMwatch has reported a surge in incidences of scammers calling people at home and raising this false alarm withsome eve telling consumers their internet will be disconnected immediately if no action is taken.

“Scammers often pose as well-known and reputable businesses to try and convince you that they’re the real deal,” their website states.

“These scammers are also well-versed at creating a sense of urgency to incite fear and anxiety that your device has been compromised and must be fixed immediately.

“If you provide your credit card details and give remote access to your computer, the scammer may not only take more than the stated ‘fee’, but also infect your computer to gain access to your personal information and commit other acts of fraud.”

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