Fraud calls..."I am ringing about your Microsoft computer"

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Xenophon PCDGS, 12 Aug 2015.

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  1. Xenophon PCDGS

    Xenophon PCDGS Veteran Member

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    The Indian sub-continent criminal fraternity have currently relaunched this fraudulent campaign to try to gain access to your computer in order to install items to allow your computer that will enable it to be added to their list of other British computers that are used in certain criminal usages.

    Each time, the voice was that of a female with a very pronounced thickly-spoken Indian accent and the last three calls made to my telephone number have been answered by me, after hearing the usual preamble, by my stating the following:-
    1)....Your information is incorrect as all our computers are Apple iMac desktop computers
    2)....You are speaking to the Microsoft office at Aviator Way on the Manchester Airport Business Park. What department do you require?
    3)....This call has been diverted and is being monitored by the Action Fraud team.

    Every time, they hung up very quickly indeed without saying anything further. Has anyone else on this website been subject to such calls in the last few days?
     
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  3. Robertj21a

    Robertj21a Established Member

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    Why are you entering into any dialogue ? - just put the phone down.
     
  4. Harpers Tate

    Harpers Tate Established Member

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    If you do that they keep calling. They need to be discouraged in some way and any of the above may (may!) actually do so, whereas hanging up doesn't.
     
  5. deltic

    deltic Established Member

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    If you are feeling bored the alternative is to keep them hanging on for hours by asking stupid questions and getting them to talk more slowly and clearly and telling them in great detail how your health problems are preventing you from dealing with their questions in a speedy manner
     
  6. Tim R-T-C

    Tim R-T-C Established Member

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    A quick phrase or two can easily stop these calls. They will use an automatic dialler so any unanswered calls just go to the bottom of the list.

    Works with telesales too. Tell them you just had new windows etc and they will usually delete you from their lists.
     
  7. jnjkerbin

    jnjkerbin Member

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    My Grandmother will always talk to them for a while, getting them to repeat things louder whilst she pretends she's deaf and then after about ten minutes, say she hasn't got a computer and hang up.

    I can't wait till I retire :)
     
  8. A-driver

    A-driver Established Member

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    You don't have to be retired to do that!
     
  9. eastwestdivide

    eastwestdivide Established Member

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    Not recently relaunched - I've been getting these calls for the last few years. If I'm not busy, depending on how I feel, I might:
    string them along for a while, then say "I think I'm wasting your time",
    or flatly deny I have a problem -
    them: "we have reports of a virus" ...
    me: "well, your report is wrong"
    or tell them outright that I think they are scamming me.

    Pain in the wotsit though, like the "we had reports that you were in a car accident" calls, where they don't have any details of place, time, year or car details.
     
  10. aformeruser

    aformeruser Veteran Member

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    This has been happening for quite a few years. My late Father kept getting phone calls from them despite him not owning a computer and not even knowing how to work a Windows computer.

    They even targeted the BBC's technology correspondent: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-15690898
     
  11. Tim R-T-C

    Tim R-T-C Established Member

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    You know what really bugs me, is that something could easily be done about these calls, but isn't.

    I'm setting up an e-mail newsletter at work and spent yesterday reading about spam laws and how to avoid the incredible array of firewalls and spam filters that surround most e-mail accounts. If enough people click 'spam' on an e-mail received in hotmail, gmail or any of the ISP accounts, their servers will block that address and the IP that sent it, at least temporarily.

    Yet nothing like that is available for phones even though a phone call is far more disruptive and people are far more likely to get scammed. There are websites dedicated to logging spam, scam and nuisance calls so there are big databases of spammy phone numbers, but no way to block them on your line. BT offers a call blocking service, but only if you give them the number and pay for the privilege. You can block 'unknown' numbers, but most callers these days do use a number to avoid this and it can mean calls from legit call centres (ie. customer service) or hospital wards get blocked.

    Surely with modern technology it wouldn't be hard to set up a spam filter style service on phone calls, so any number receiving enough complaints would be blocked until they can prove they are legitimate. It is a lot harder to get a new landline number than a new e-mail address, so it could quickly shut down a lot of dodgy operations.

    People could add numbers to a white list, if they are dealing with an accident claims company for example, possibly even add whole countries. I'm not expecting any legit calls from the subcontinent, so would be happy to block any calls from that region from my line. Obviously others won't want to do this.

    Of course the fact that BT et al. would lose a lot of revenue from the drop in call volume would have nothing to do with the laziness in introducing such a service would it...?
     
    Last edited: 12 Aug 2015
  12. Greenback

    Greenback Emeritus Moderator

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    I must admit I do enjoy tormenting these people when I;m in the right mood. So far, I've done some of the things described above. My favourite has been to ask lots of silly questions until you can hear the frustration in their voice at having to answer them. I pretend it's not my computer, it;s my son or daughters, I want to help them, but I don't even know how to switch it on. After a lot of talk about plugs and on switches, I ask them what the password is!

    Eventually they just give in and hang up!
     
  13. jon0844

    jon0844 Veteran Member

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    Every minute you waste of their time (if you have the time) is a minute they're not trying to scam someone else.
     
  14. Puffing Devil

    Puffing Devil Established Member

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    I've only had one and enjoyed wasting 30 minutes of their time by being a really bad computer user. I also wanted to see what the scan was and how they worked it.
     
  15. AM9

    AM9 Established Member

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    I occasionally get these nuisance calls and just get rid of them. However, a few months ago I had one and as I wasn't busy and decided to engage them in (what I knew would be) pointless time wasting.
    Their opening patoir was that they were Microsoft support and that they had detected a virus on my computer. They said that they could prove that they were genuine as they could tell me what the unique identifier of my computer. I was instructed to use the command prompt to find the CLSID. This is a long number that is the same for every recent Windows computer but looks unique when viewed in isolation. I dutifully followed their instructions and read out the numbers from the screen, but changes the last four numbers. They panicked and said it couldn't be that and asked me to check it again which I did and fudged the number.
    I was then passed onto a 'supervisor' who took me through the process again and I gave them the same wrong number again. He then changed the tactic and tried to get me to give them my IP address. I was happy to do that as it was a 192.xxx.. private address. He then wanted the gateway IP address at which point I diverted and asked him what was the name of their operation.
    He told me a fairly innocuous support company name. I then asked him for their web address so that I could check that they were as 'genuine' as they claimed. He struggled with that at first then saying that it was "weebly.xxx etc.." which I knew was a free website service. I told him that it didn't seem right so he told me to f-off and put the phone down. Quite entertaining, I wish that I could have told him that it was a pleasure wasting his time.

    I passed the info onto my local neighbourhood watch to warn those more vulnerable and to give some of them a good laugh.
     
    Last edited: 12 Aug 2015
  16. Passenger John

    Passenger John Member

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    I love to pretend to be really thick with computers telling them to repeat their instructions several times over, managed to keep one going for at least 15 minutes, until they start to get frustrated. Then just calmly say "Maybe its because I am using an Apple Mac"

    As far as accident claims is concerned, the other day I said yes I have had an accident a couple of weeks ago which really got there interest going, when asked what had happened I said "I wet myself"
     
  17. Puffing Devil

    Puffing Devil Established Member

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    My experience, and that of most others, is that the calls from from India. Nothing racist in pointing that out.
     
  18. dgl

    dgl Member

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    Had a few of these, my grans had a couple too (but although she does have an old laptop she can't work it).

    Unfortunalty my mums ex boss got one of these calls and although she did not end up handing over any money they had already locked up her computer.

    In the end (due to having many problems repairing it and due to their being no visible XP key for the computer so couldn't do a reinstall) ended up transferring all the stuff on the old machine to a spare WIN8 machine I had floating around (which with NTFS permissions isn't a simple drag/drop exercise) and she now knows not to respond to these calls.
     
  19. BlythPower

    BlythPower Member

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    There's a problem with my windows you say? Well now that you mention it, one of the double glazed panels is little misted inside. Are you from Safestyle UK?

    Alternatively, just tell them you'll switch the computer on for them and leave the phone next to your hoover for 15 mins...
     
  20. Feathers44

    Feathers44 Member

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    I like the odd chat with these guys if I've got time on my hands.

    When they tell me I have a problem with my computer, I generally ask "Which one?" and if I get an answer of "Any one" it generally goes downhill from there since I start questioning why that contradicts their opening statement.

    At one point I had some guy who clearly felt he couldn't hang up before I did and simply starting to tell me to "Go to hell" repeatedly... at which point I tried to engage him on his views on the afterlife for a while.

    He gave up in the end.
     
  21. NSEFAN

    NSEFAN Established Member

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    The best way to get rid of them is to waste so much of their time that they hang up in frustration. I've used it before and it works very well, and also provides entertainment for a few hours. If enough people did this then their business plan would fail and they would go away. The same approach works on those rich Nigerian princes who want to share an investment. Their reactions are awfully funny when they finally work out what you're doing. :D
     
  22. HilversumNS

    HilversumNS Member

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    I had an 'accident claim' call this morning. Kept them busy for 20 minutes, gave them my name as D Cameron, postcode SW1A 2AA, house number 10.
     
  23. me123

    me123 Established Member

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    Just because the person you spoke to has an Indian accent doesn't even mean they were calling you from India. The reality is that the people you speak to often aren't even aware that they're involved in a criminal scheme. They're just employees for an outsourced call centre following a script they've been given. It's clearly very easy to get an Indian based call centre given how common they are. And, indeed, using an Indian call centre probably makes the whole thing look more realistic, because in reality the companies they're impersonating are very likely to have Indian call centres! The real criminals in these organised schemes are rarely if ever involved in the front line of the scheme. They could, of course, be in India. They could equally be anywhere else in the world. Russia. USA. Could even be based in Alderley Edge or Wilmslow!
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Or "yes, I was in an accident, but it was totally my fault". This works quite well because they invariably try to persuade you that you were not in fact to blame, which is of course highly illegal.
     
  24. Tim R-T-C

    Tim R-T-C Established Member

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    Many are in India using call centres set-up during the heyday of Indian call centres in the 2000s, but now in many cases the legitimate uses have moved back to the UK since so many people objected to them.

    Based on much of the dialogue on these calls, I expect that the people calling know they are not legitimate, since they are so quick to hang-up when they are told a firm doesn't use windows computers for example (a real caller might persist and ask if they might have an older computer elsewhere that is still in use and at risk).
     
  25. jon0844

    jon0844 Veteran Member

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    These scammers will be in India, and most will know exactly what they're doing. Of course the ringleaders could be from elsewhere, but the authorities in India should be coming down hard on them.

    YouTube is full of recordings and you tell me they are innocently reading from a script!

    Given many businesses are moving call centres back to the UK, there's probably a lot of people who feel compelled to do this just to earn a crust.
     
    Last edited: 12 Aug 2015
  26. Johnuk123

    Johnuk123 Established Member

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    Assuming you're content for all withheld calls to be blocked simply invest a few quid in a call blocker, works perfectly.

    Anybody who thinks these Indian fraudsters are unaware they're scamming must be mad.
     
    Last edited: 12 Aug 2015
  27. Kernowfem

    Kernowfem Member

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    I've had eleven of these calls since Monday morning. Normally i just hang up, but I'm recently laid up after surgery and bored stupid. So this week I've indulged them, well I say indulged...I've spoken to them in Italian, pretended to be the speaking clock, asked them to hold while playing 30 seconds to Mars followed by a bit of bring me the horizon. Had my four year old niece engage them in conversation about frozen and finally this morning put the phone at the side of my brothers chop saw....while he had it going.

    However, it's not amusing to my 73 year old mum who has to keep answering these calls up to four times a day. They are frankly, a pain in the arse and need stopping. Even registering with a call list doesn't stop them.
     
  28. Aldaniti

    Aldaniti Member

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    Have a whistle next to the phone. An Acme Thunderer is ideal. I promise you, they won't call back.
     
  29. bb21

    bb21 Forum Staff Staff Member Global Moderator

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    A simple way to waste their time without requiring much effort is just to say "yes" to every question, with the odd incomprehensible gibberish throw in. I once managed that for 211 seconds from the first "yes" to when they hung up, and I have yet to know anyone who can break that record. :D

    The trick is not to answer too frequently and pretend that you are in your 80s.

    All the other methods to string them along just seem too much effort to me.
     
  30. Tim R-T-C

    Tim R-T-C Established Member

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    As mentioned above, this can block legit calls too.

    Not to mention that many scam calls seem to have numbers on them these days, even if they are rather odd numbers.
     
  31. TheNewNo2

    TheNewNo2 Member

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    I occasionally get ambulance chaser type calls on my work landline. You know, along the lines, of "you may be eligible for compensation for your work-related injury, road traffic accident, slip trip or fall, etc". I just think that if they don't know what happened to me, why would I trust them?

    That said, all these scams are actually meant to be easy to see through, as it helps filter out the people who are too clever to be scammed. If you would look sceptically upon being related to the prince of Nigeria, they aren't interested in you to begin with.
     
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