Scammer tried to sting technician

'TIS the season of scams and not many Gladstone locals are happy.

Over the last month, The Observer reported on an endless amount of dodgy workman scams, taxation scams, phone scams and letter scams that have doing the rounds in the Gladstone region.

Communication and information technologies have raised the level for these faceless criminals with many scams becoming more sophisticated.

The latest to hit Gladstone is the classic telemarketing scam – your computer has a virus!

Gladstone local Steve Cook from Desktop Support said he received a phone call from a man with a strong Asian accent who called himself, Richard Smith.

“He rang and said he was representing the Windows Live company and introduced himself as a Windows Live messenger,” Mr Smith said.

“He said that they think my computer is infected with viruses and he told me to go to my computer and open up the prefix folder, which is a standard file on any Windows computer.

“I knew it was a scam straight away because no one asks these types of question.

“He asked how many files have I got in there and I said about 140 files but it all looks fine, and by the way, I'm a computer technician.

“He then hung-up.”

Mr Cook said the phone call was coming from a restricted number.

“I suspect he was going to tell me that there is a virus in my files and he will come in on the wire and get rid of it while accessing my files and information or he may have asked for credit card details to fix the problem.”

As well as losing money to the scammer by paying for a service that provides you no benefits, your personal and banking details are also at risk. If you give a scammer remote access to your computer, they can cause all sorts of mischief – including infecting your computer and acquiring your personal information.

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