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Tue Jan 17, 2017, 05:06 PM

Is this a scam, an identity theft, or phishing?

Today my computer suddenly froze. A message appears that Microsoft blocked my computer, that I am infected with a virus and spyware, that my personal info is compromised, and to call this # right away.
So I call the number and -- yes I am stupid - I let the guy take over my computer.
After 30 minutes of showing me how much was wrong with my computer, he tells me for $120.00 they would fix my computer.
I decline, and hang up.

Someone else tells me to unplug and plug in my computer.
I did, and my computer now appears to be acting normally.

So I wonder how much harm I am now open to.
I have changed credit card and bank account.
The company that wanted to sell me the $120.00 service contract is
https://www.sktechserve.com/technical-support/

My computer is a dell desk-top, OS is Microsoft XP.

Does anyone have any suggestions how I can protect myself?
I mean from identity theft.
Is it too late?

Thank you.

ellen

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Reply Is this a scam, an identity theft, or phishing? (Original post)
ellenrr Jan 2017 OP
HubertHeaver Jan 2017 #1
earthshine Jan 2017 #2
Egnever Jan 2017 #3
frogmarch Jan 2017 #4
canetoad Jan 2017 #5
neeksgeek Jan 2017 #6
ellenrr Jan 2017 #7

Response to ellenrr (Original post)

Tue Jan 17, 2017, 05:16 PM

1. All three.

I got that message. I shut the machine down, unplugged the power, waited a few minutes and then re-started. A few minutes is longer than necessary but I had to go to the bathroom.

I have had no apparent problems since.

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Response to ellenrr (Original post)

Tue Jan 17, 2017, 05:28 PM

2. I can't help you with the identity theft, but you must secure the computer!

 

These people are such scum! At least you wasted half-hour of his time.

You gave him complete access. He could have copied your entire drive and downloaded for future examination.

So, what caused that pop-up message? There may still be some kind of virus on there.

You really should format the drive and reinstall Windows.

Also, if you do reinstall, why not move up to Win 7? It is much more secure than XP.

You can get a valid 7 copy off ebay for just a few dollars.

Good luck!

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Response to ellenrr (Original post)

Tue Jan 17, 2017, 05:32 PM

3. Yes it is a scam

 

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Response to ellenrr (Original post)

Tue Jan 17, 2017, 05:53 PM

4. Don't call! It's Ransomware!

It got me when I clicked on a sidebar link in the Facebook Messages area, and it cost me over $200 to get rid of it. Our computer place is cheap compared to some of them, but still.

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Response to ellenrr (Original post)

Tue Jan 17, 2017, 06:50 PM

5. Yeah, unfortunately pretty bad

There is a way to clean up the computer without re-loading, although as mentioned above, I would be reformatting and re-installing Windows.

First, get a fresh, new USB stick. 4 gig is plenty. On another computer download and install Malwarebytes on the stick making sure it has the latest malware database included.

Then you need to plug in the stick, boot your computer into safe mode and run Malwarebytes from the USB stick. Safemode varies in the way it boots. Quite often you turn the computer on, then keep tapping the F8 key until the computer boots although it may be different on your machine. Good luck.

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Response to ellenrr (Original post)

Tue Jan 17, 2017, 08:28 PM

6. Yep. Total BS.

I've seen this on a few sites where I waste hours on old TV shows (I don't have cable). My main pc is on Windows 10 ( meh), but I've just closed the browser and run antivirus. One time it found an infection, which I removed. I did call them once, but just for fun I booted into a Linux live cd, and led them in circles "pretending" I couldn't find the menus they wanted. Then I laughed, called them rude names, and hung up.

Yes, I'm very immature.

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Response to ellenrr (Original post)

Wed Jan 18, 2017, 11:39 AM

7. another related question

I have been putting off buying a computer (mine is 10 years old.)
so what if I buy a new computer, like today--
but then I want to copy off my hard drive to the new one--
so I think that would not make a difference as to my present situation?

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