I've had plausable phone calls supposedly from Virgin call centre in India, telling me that there are reported problems with Routers dropping conections and they need to help me resolve this. I was tied up with something else when they first called so I said call back later. When they called back I was on the PC. She asked me what lights were on the Router and then told me to go on the computer and press the Windows + R keys (which brings up the Run command) then told me to enter some letters (beginning with ev... I won't put anymore) then click OK or press Enter. I said "No I won't", she said why not, I said I am not going to give anyone access to my computer. At that point she got quite angry and said Why are you wasting my time. I hung up. Need I add that the phone calls were from different phone numbers.
I was suspicious about the first call, Virgin haven't made calls to me like this in the last 20 odd years, they usually try to sell me something, but thought I would see what they wanted anyway. I don't claim to be clever, but many people could well be taken in by this.
Almost certainly bogus. Anyone can look up a phone number & see what provider it belongs too. They then assume you use the same company for internet, so pretend to be them.
I have two lines into the house, one on Virgin & one on Post Office, but only use VM Broadband. Yet I regularly get calls saying my BT router is causing problems on the PO line. PO have their own routers but are part of BT, so I know it’s a scam
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@AL49 let me guess, the command they wanted you to enter was eventvwr (or eventvwr.msc) right? All that does it to open up the built-in Windows event viewer which is a sort of log of the 'things' that windows is doing, and usually there will be loads of events which look for all the world as if they are errors but are really just a normal part of how windows works.
What would have happened is the caller would have got you to open the event viewer and describe what you see, naturally you would see some scary looking entries and the caller would have given you the usual BS spiel along the lines of 'oh my God, this is much worse than we thought, each of those 'errors' is a hacking attempt and very soon the hackers will get in and steal all of your money' - which is quite ironic since that's exactly what the person on the other end of the line is and that's what they are trying to do!
The next step is for them to say 'Don't worry - we can fix this, just download and install this 'special tool' from a particular website' That allows them to gain remote access to the machine (you are perfectly safe up to this point by the way) and they'll go through the motions of apparently checking your machine while in the background they are looking for bank details and installing malicious software to really steal information and send it back to them. The actual remote access software itself is perfectly legitimate - I use them all the time as part of my job!
Eventually they 'find and eliminate' all the problems on your PC, and then possibly even ask for a payment for their helpful services!
It's all laughably obvious, but only if you happen to be technical and can see through all the rubbish they spout - unfortunately many people are taken in by this, certainly enough to make the scam worthwhile.
@jem101 Correct. As soon as I was asked to go on the computer it was obvious where it would go. I did a search on here for scams and didn't find this particular one so thought I would put it up. Hoping it might at least warn someone not to fall for it.
Many people are taken in by these scams. It's a growth industry. The scammers are getting cleverer though; they are now using native English speakers to do recorded messages that aren't nonsensical. "Your router has been compromised by many countries" and "This is Shirley from ISP... we're going to cut you off" are two "(in)famous" ones.
You can find more information on these scams, how they work and who is behind them on the link below:
-- The only winning move is not to play. No system is 100% secure Ridicule is nothing to be scared of - Adam Ant The only thing constant - is change. Chris Evans The internet is a series of tubes Windows Update isn't rocket science - if it were, it would work. Unlike Monty Python, spam is never off. Some video posts may contain swearing/inappropriate content for young children
The past couple of days I've started getting these and man are they annoying. Especially with a retro telephone haha! I lost my **bleep** this morning after the 3rd time of not answering. She was trying to tell me that I was sending error reports. I told her to stop calling and there is nothing wrong with my Internet. Why do they do this!!!? I nearly fell for it yesterday but as I started telling one caller what lights were on my router, it clicked and I hung up, they've been ringing since. Like life isn't bad enough people need to scam others. Scumbags
We had another one today. This time from 07557-094750 claiming there is a problem with our Virgin broadband. Sounded like a busy Asian call centre in the background. About 20 minutes earlier we'd had an 'Unavailable International' call. As my son has just gone to work abroad I felt obliged to answer it but it hung up as soon as I picked up. Clearly that was the call to alert the scammers there was somebody at home to answer the telephone! Just before this one we'd had one from 01277-633356, which I didn't answer. We normally ignore numbers we don't recognise but this last one looked like a mobile number and as people change them all the time it had to be answered. The last time I ignored a persistent mobile caller it turned out to be my brother in law calling to say he'd changed his number!
These callers are dangerous. One of these days I'll be ignoring a hospital appointment (they always withhold numbers) or the call for my Covid jab (my surgery also withholds numbers)!
Reviewing my phone's log it seems to be a roughly once a week thing of an unavailable number followed by several dodgy numbers for the day. So far this year 19th, 13th, 5th so I expect at least one more scam call day this month!