portrait of an indian as a scammer

March 26, 2013 at 7:45 am 7 comments

i got a call the other day that i didn’t expect. it was from a guy with a heavy indian accent. after introducing himself, he told me that his company is working in partnership with microsoft to monitor and prevent the spread of computer malwares over the internet. he gave me the bad news: my home computer has been infected.

i pride myself of being technical savvy. people come to me for help with their computer problems. could it be true that this time around i needed assistance myself? i found it quite amusing refreshing that the table had turned on me for a change. it helped keep my feet on the ground and my ego in check.

how could this have happened? as far as i know, my computer is fully protected. i have norton anti-virus and keep all security updates installed. i have firewall. i also make sure that i practice safe internet practices. well, almost. i admit that i had been tempted to visit some dubious sites that aroused my libido curiosity. after all, i’m only human. could these moments of indiscretions did me in?

are you sure? i asked the person on the line with my voice starting to quiver. he said he was, based on the messages coming from my computer and showing up on their company logs.

but i have anti-virus software and firewall installed! i protested.

anti-virus softwares and firewalls can provide protection, he explained, but they cannot detect all viruses and malwares from getting into the computer as they grow in sophistication and stealth.

he told me that time was of the essence. i should log on to my computer right away and follow his instructions.

he directed me to event viewer, a component of the operating system that reports events happening on the computer, and asked me to tell him about the error messages that i was seeing. when i read to him a couple of the messages, he said that they were the results of infection. by this time, i started having doubts about his expertise. the errors that i gave him were what you call soft errors.

when i told him that the errors could not be the results of an infection, he became defensive and obviously irritated. we kept arguing for ten minutes without anybody giving an inch. finally, he told me that i should talk to his technical supervisor who appeared to be another indian based on his accent.

he confirmed that my computer has been compromised and needed immediate attention. he told me to go to google and search for ammyy.com. he talked so pleasantly that i did exactly as instructed.

google listed several results for ammyy.com which i found to be providing free software for remote site access. fortunately for me, some of the entries on the list were about scams related to the use of the software.

the technical supervisor told me to download the software and install it on the computer.

hell no, i told him. i couldn’t allow him to gain control of my computer and hung up.

the moral of the story is never ever fall for this kind of crap. microsoft and other legitimate companies do not make unsolicited calls to help you fix your computer.

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Entry filed under: Blogroll, commentary, humor, internet, rip offs, scam. Tags: , , , .

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7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. lindaghill  |  March 26, 2013 at 8:01 am

    I’ve been getting calls from them about 4 times a year for the last 3 years. I just tell them I don’t have a computer. They seem surprised since they were positive I had an infection… Yeah.

    Reply
    • 2. plaridel  |  March 26, 2013 at 10:27 pm

      linda:

      seriously? since it was my first, i should expect to hear from them again. good grief. 😦

      Reply
  • 3. Seyi sandra  |  March 26, 2013 at 8:03 am

    I’ve had several calls from these Indian guys, first time I was polite, second and third time I hung up! Lucky you didn’t download any stuff, they would have corrupted your computer big time! Great post!
    🙂

    Reply
    • 4. plaridel  |  March 26, 2013 at 10:39 pm

      seyi sandra:

      you, too? i guess their modus operandi is to introduce a virus into your computer and then tell you they can fix it for a fee.

      Reply
  • 5. Sfaturi de luat în seamă | startachim blog  |  April 2, 2013 at 1:10 am

    […] portrait of an indian as a scammer (plaridel.wordpress.com) […]

    Reply
  • 6. Imelda  |  October 16, 2013 at 10:30 am

    Thanks for the warning.

    Reply
    • 7. plaridel  |  October 16, 2013 at 10:48 pm

      Imelda:

      you’re welcome. i don’t think it would be impolite to hang up the phone just in case.

      Reply

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