I was alerted to this scam when my mother received a phone call. The call was from what sounded like an Indian call centre and was someone claiming they worked for Microsoft. They told my mother that they were calling because they were aware she was having problems with her computer and that she had downloaded some malicious software. They wanted her to start up her computer so that they could look at it remotely. Luckily my mother was suspicious and told the caller she didn’t have time to deal with it. She then called me and to find out if it was genuine. Naturally my first point of call was to ask the mighty Google whether it was known scam and I quickly came across several articles relating to it including this one.
It seems the scam is to take control of a persons machine and install various software under the guise of removing some malicious software from the computer. They then take your credit card details and charge you for the remote support. I was surprised that this was the first time I have come across scam particularly as it appears to have targeted so many people. It seems many people are fooled by it because the caller often has details such as their address and sometimes even their account number from their broadband provider. There are also suspicions that this information is often being passed on from employees of some of these organisations. Its a scam that I don’t think would fool those such as myself that are fairly well informed but I would imagine people who don’t work in the IT industry could easily be caught out.