One of our members received a telephone call out of the blue informing him that his Wifi Hub/Router had been massively affected by many viruses. The story was that there had recently been a massive cyber attack on BT and Talk Talk so the Government had caused a company to be formed to deal with the matter and the caller was therefore ringing from that company to sort things out.
Our member was informed that a new Router would be delivered at 10.00am the next morning and in the meantime the caller (who gave a full name) was there to help sort the member’s computer out, get rid of all the bad stuff and re-install all the data.
The caller was extremely helpful and friendly sounding and spent a couple of hours on the phone, in the meantime gaining our member’s complete confidence so that when asked whether he should re-install bank details this was of course agreed. Unfortunately as details were requested it was suddenly realised that too much detail had been given out so the telephone call was terminated. Immediately the original caller rang back and put a message on our member’s computer screen however these were ignored and the member rang their bank to discover that an attempt had been made to withdraw nearly £2,000 but the bank had actually stopped the transaction. So a very near miss.
It seems likely that the member’s computer was infected before the telephone call but the message is that if you get any calls out of the blue don’t trust them – contact a third party first and check if it is likely to be genuine.
It would seem as though we will have to depend more and more on computers for our personal and financial dealings in the future so we will need to stay very alert to the possibility of scams – never give out any bank details to a stranger, the banks have said they won’t ever ask you for full details over the phone or via a computer.