St. Charles residents recently have reported that subjects purporting to be from Microsoft have called several times over the last week, and attempted to “help fix a problem” with residents’ home computers/laptops. The callers have been both male and female, and have a strong foreign accent.
This is a common SCAM, in which offenders will gain a person’s trust. According to Microsoft, once that happens a variety of outcomes can occur, including, but not limited to:
- Having you install malicious software on your computer that could be used to gather personal information.
- The scammers could take control of your computer remotely, which then would allow them to change privacy settings, leaving your computer vulnerable.
- Scammers may ask for credit card information to bill you for phony services.
- You could be directed to fraudulent websites that may ask for your credit card or other personal information.
Neither Microsoft, nor similar companies, makes unsolicited phone calls.
If you receive a call like this, simply hang up. If you feel you have become a victim, and may have given out personal information, like your social security number or credit card information, contact your credit card companies and/or the three credit bureaus: (TransUnion, Experian and Equifax). You may be required to make a police report, which can be done at the St. Charles Police Department.