London police advise about ongoing Computer Scam

WARNING: Your computer may be infected by a virus. Take preventative action now!

Here’s a typical scenario: a caller, often claiming to work for Microsoft or another reputable software company, will cold-call you and ask if your computer is running slowly or not working as it should. He will then offer to repair your computer via internet access, which can involve either software installation or the caller gaining remote control of your computer after you’ve granted him access. Payment for the antivirus software or the repair service is handled via your credit card with charges typically ranging from $35 to $470 per call. 

Allowing a third party to download software or remotely access your computer carries a number of serious risks. Malicious software can be installed to capture sensitive data such as your online banking user names and passwords, bank account information and your personal identity information. All of this information can be used in subsequent frauds that empty your bank accounts and charge your credit cards. Your computer can also be converted to a bot-net, which means criminals can use it without your knowledge or participation. It can then be used to spam other people, spread viruses to your friends or overload computer networks. Getting your credit card information is the second important part of the virus scam. Once a criminal has that information it can be used to make purchases without your consent.

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