Reader Sharron Tyrrell sounds the warning that computer hackers are calling unsuspecting owners of computers, pretending they need access to your computer to remove a virus.
From Sharron: “FYI ... the scammers are at it again. They are calling saying they are from windows and you have trouble with your computer. They want to get into it. Don't by any means let them - they are not who they say they are … they will have a thick accent .. .at least the ones who call here about twice a week do.
What happened to Sharron is the classic Modus Operandi of a con artist after your money.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, they scammers often say they are calling from big companies like Microsoft, and claim they can help you -- they then ask for access to your computer.
From there, the scheme can devolve into several different money-making ploys, according to the Federal Trade Commission. The con artist may:
Ask for remote access to your computer and then change your settings in a way that makes your computer -- or the information on it -- vulnerable.
Enroll you in an expensive -- but worthless -- computer security, maintenance or warranty program.
Trick you into installing malware that then snags your private information, like passwords or financial details.
Ask for your credit card information and steal it or use it to bill you for fake services or services that are readily available for free.
If you verify that you are a victim of identity theft, the Federal Trade Commission has an entire website to guide you through fighting back, and you can find it here. Thanks Sharron for the tip off.