Complaints this year
This is the "Help4Windows" Scam where they want to remote into your PC and "fix" it. Yeah right.
I found a great way to stuff them round.
First claim you want their number so you can call them back. They usually have a number that you can call them back on. This is useful later when you want to trick them further.
Just agree with them, yes I have errors, someone said they would fix my computer and remote into it ...... Get far enough through the process them to provide you the 6 digit pin number for the logmein or support.me website and hang up. Don't click "connect to technician" and you will be fine.
Even if you do, there are about 4 things you have to click yes, OK, I agree to before they can get into your PC, so don't get too concerned. I use logmein all the time to support my clients on their PC's.
Call logmein support on the number here https://secure.logmein.com/AU/contactus/ in Australia that is 1800 658 079 and report a scam to them giving them the 6 digit pin number. Logmein will then cancel the scammers account.
If you want to repeat the process, I just call them the scammer back from time to time and say you are ready for a remote session, say you were busy before and are ready to go, yes I'm on the support.me or logmein123.com website and am ready for the remote support, get another 6 digit pin and then report it to logmein to be blocked again.
I've done this a lot now, you would think they know my voice, but I've had about 10 of their accounts cancelled. Logmein are aware of this issue and are only too pleased to assist.
Go Scam the Scammers
This is an outright scam that is running across the globe and is *usually* sourced from the sub-continent. It's unusual to leave an Aussie number and even more unusual to leave an address.
I've been tracking a number of these and recorded the call I had last night which is now on my blog here: http://www.troyhunt.com/2012/08/cold-call-scammed-again-but-this-time.html
I'll also be sharing the info with local authorities to see if we can get some traction on it.
Got these scam artists calling me today from the Windows Support Centre, suposedly calling from Sydney, however all three people I spoke to had very strong Indian accents. After wasting their time, they encouraged me to click to www.support.me, and then enter a access code, that would have given them access to my computer - which of course, I did not do, however I did enjoy wasting 15 minutes of their time!
I think this scam has changed the way it works They are noe calling saying we are from Windows Refund department and say they will refund money for a program that I have not used They ask you to call back on a Sydney number (02) 8005 8264 to verify that this is correct They then ask you to log onto a computer service so they can access your computer and log you into Wester Union money transfer system. I rand Western Umion and they confirmed this was a scam
I knew about the scam so went through the steps "hypotheticaly with him first to waste time. He insisted I do all the cleaning myself, they dont need to log into the PC. Get to teh actualy steps to see fi he does anything different from the norm and oh..theres a problem.. i will need to log in ;) His name was "alex" nth sydeny postcode 2060
An Indian guy calling himself "Austen" purporting to be working for Microsoft "Help for Windows" tried to convince me that a random log of events in the "Computer Management" folder of my computer were instances of malware attack or hackers trying to access my computer. They aren't. I knew this, but I wanted to see where it was going.
So I played dumb-but-suspicious in order to waste as much of his time as possible, and also for the opportunity to analyse the techniques he uses to gain the trust of his mark, and was eventually lead to a website: http://www.showmypc.com/. I was directed to download a program which would give someone remote access to my computer.
The would-be scam artist is calling himself Austen, and says he is working for "Help for Windows" which (apparently) has an office in North Sydney. He gives his number (02) 8005 4980/">(02) 8005 4980 and encourages you to call him back on your mobile, as if this somehow proves that he is who he says he is, and also, so that you pay for the joy of being scammed, rather than them having to pay long-distance call rates from India.
His technique seems to be based on saying whatever he needs to say to keep you on the line. He gets slightly ticked off when his identity and authority is called into question, plays the sympathy card: "hey, why you being so mean to me... I'm just a little guy working for Microsoft". He flatters your ego, bows to your "greater authority", and he can even pull the emotional blackmail of the "If you don't trust me, I can't help you, and you'll be stuck with these invasions of your computer" variety. He'll even sneer and condescend, and suggest that you're stupid if you keep asking questions. He even talks around in circles, and makes absolutely no sense at times, but it's all just a confidence trick to get you to question your better judgement and give some random stranger access to your passwords, social media, online bank account access, and who knows what the hell else... blackmail fodder?
Microsoft doesn't cold call its customers:
This particular scam has been going for quite a while now, and there seems to be little the authorities can do to stop it:
http://phonenotes.org/(02) 8005 4980
This practice is disgusting and needs to stop... think about how they could devastate the life of an elderly person if they managed to gain access to their life savings. When are the authorities going to stop this crap? This is fraud!
Immigration Dept might be raiding the address soon, and that of other suspected call centres.
i've had the same experience. they even told me that they wanted to return money that i'd paid to them. when i told the bloke i hadnt paid any money he got very upset. i told him to calm down and laughed at him and told him to stop playing with himself and hung up, but they keep ringing. its annoying...
The woman who called me was "Genellia" with a terrible indian accent so thick I couldn't even really understand her. I knew it wasn't right because I've never given permission for anyone to contact me about anything with my computer. She even said she could fix the problem without being online which is interesting. Just the same I got the website and number and said I would call back if I thought it was legit. Then I found these blogs. Soooo grateful. I hope these guys pay for what they are doing. They try to sound so nice and polite on the phone, which just makes me feel sorry for them and their families. Love Roberts idea, scam the scammers... genius!
Just had a very interesting phone conversation with a gentleman with an Indian accent. He advised me that he was from Microsoft Help Desk and that his company had conducted a survey of my neighbourhood finding that 31% of all PC uses had files down loaded that disrupted their computers. He wanted to check and was wanting me to open my computer to his site. I got his phone number making out that I had no problem if I should have a problem I would ring for assistance. I wanted to know more about their prising he won't tell me that that was something the supervising technician would discuss with me should they find a program planted on my PC. I hung up to take another phone call. Then the supervisor rang me back to try to convince me to open my PC. I told him that I have an automatic checking system installed to bar the types of files he refered too and on doing so he hung up. I was entertained for 15 minutes and for 15minutes they wasted their time. Everyone should waste as much of these bottom feeders' time as possible. It cost them!!
Just had my second call from Help for Windows located at North Sydney. Austen this time - phone 280054980. He went into great detail about how Chinese university graduates were hacking into computers worldwide and only they could save me from this illegal practice. lol.
A guy called Mark (with a strong Indian accent) rang today from 'help for windows company' in albert street north Sydney with a similar story to the others listed. After him trying to convince me to turn on my computer for 15 minutes & me refusing, he told me that I didn't even have a computer & was wasting his time!!! He was not able to tell me what the 'infectious file' was called that my computer had downloaded, but was convinced that he could fix it, even though no anti virus program could identify it.. He told me my address & that he would make me pay for the call...
Lady with strong Indian accent called and tried to convince me that we had a computer virus. Came up as overseas phone call and when I questioned her where she was calling from she claimed to be in North Sydney, 106 Albert Street and gave me the (02) 8005 4980. She couldnt explain the overseas caller ID and as I had recognised this as a scam I told her that she is the lowest scum on earth tring to scam people. Shame this place "Help for Windows" cant be prosecuted in the courts.
Just had a call from Alyce Watson from "Help for Windows" who spun preety much the same story - As a genuine Windows they are calling everyone in my area who uses windows to advise of an online infection that can't be picked up by any Anti virus/malware/ spyware software. After being told that over 40% of users in my area had made complaints about the infection, they wanted to make sure that everyone is aware of the infection and how to get rid of it. When she couldn't (wouldn't) answer any of my questions about how she obtained my name, number, what area I was in and how she was able to identify if I was even a windows user I expresed my doubts about how genuine she was. She then continued to talk over the top of me and insist that I get on the internet and download a file (sorry, didn't record it as I was on the verge of hanging up) I mentioned that I was confident this was a scam and the number, name and brief conversation would be reported to the Police and Microsoft.
"Help for Windows" has just contacted me with identical behaviour as related by other contributors to date.
Initial caller not identified, but "technical" advisor called himself "Michael".
Telephone number and address match exactly.
From the beginning I was suspicious and made sure I was not connected to the internet during our conversations.
The final request to allow them to perform surgery on my computer was not welcomed and the caller was advised to await further instructions.
A return confirmation call is most unlikely!
A guy called Ron William Watson told me that i had problems with my laptop and told me to press windows + r to check out my event viewer and to check at my warnings and errors to show that i had issues on my computer. Then he told me to tell my internet id and so on and told me to accept this thing which allowed him acces to remotely use my acc. Downloaded Ammyy for me and told me to pay for service and stuff for $400. Pressured me to pay becasue i was mid way of the service.
Do not fall for the trick and end call immediately
I also received a call from an Alison Watson, she seemed very genuine and kind on the phone also telling me I had problems with my computor. I got scammed $198.00, when I realized this I quickly rang my bank and was able to cancel the transaction. I had tried to contact them several times with no answer. After a week they realized their transaction was cancelled by me and they were on the phone to me begging me to give them a second chance. I hung up on them. Several phone calls later they gave up.
To everyone out their please do not get involved in a telephone conversation with help4windows, they sound very convincing, just hang up on them.