Scam switches from Microsoft to Telstra

Scam switches from Microsoft to Telstra

Summary: The remote access scam where people ring up claiming to be Microsoft has changed to have a more local flavour, with callers now claiming to be from Telstra or BigPond, according to the government.

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TOPICS: Security, Telcos, Telstra
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The remote access scam where people ring up claiming to be Microsoft has changed to have a more local flavour, with callers now claiming to be from Telstra or BigPond, according to the government.

The scammers will claim that they have noticed problems with the user's computer or phone line, and might claim that the broadband connection has been hacked, according to Scamwatch.

This could strike a chord with some users, after a truckie hacked his way into internet service provider (ISP) Platform Networks, which many media outlets reported incorrectly as a National Broadband Network (NBN) hack.

Like the Microsoft scam, the caller will request remote access to the user's computer and will run a "scan" that will discover a fake virus, which will then prompt them to sell the user software or a service to fix the computer, asking for personal or bank details.

Telstra told the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), which runs Scamwatch, that it never asks for credit card details over the phone to fix computer problems, adding that it is not affiliated with any companies that do.

The ACCC recommended that users hang up if they receive a phone call out of the blue requesting remote access.

Topics: Security, Telcos, Telstra

Suzanne Tindal

About Suzanne Tindal

Suzanne Tindal cut her teeth at ZDNet.com.au as the site's telecommunications reporter, a role that saw her break some of the biggest stories associated with the National Broadband Network process. She then turned her attention to all matters in government and corporate ICT circles. Now she's taking on the whole gamut as news editor for the site.

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6 comments
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  • Dont hang up on them...... string them along a little if you have the spare time. The longer they are on the phone with you, the less time they have for scamming people who dont know any better.
    aacgood@...
    • Exactly what I do / did :) http://youtu.be/YibSM-gfFx8
      AzzX
  • "Hi. I'm from Telstra / Microsoft and we've traced a malware problem to your computer."

    (Responses used by a few of my friends)
    (1) "That's interesting! Do you lie about other things too?"
    (2) "Did you know that Cthulhu loves you?"
    (3) "Yes, I know. I wrote it. It transmits via phone lines. Have a nice day!"
    (4) "I wouldn't know about that, I'm just here to burgle the place."
    NefariousWheel
  • Hah, I wonder if there is any holes in RDP that let you connect to the client. Perhaps steal their personal info.
    IzzehO
  • "Remote access? ok, yep im running freebsd - what do you want me to do first."
    TechSavy-ea1a8
  • "Really, you're ringing me, because you found there was malware coming from my IP address? OMG That means my ISP has broken their privacy terms and condistions and given our my personal details!! I'm going to have to call the police on them! Ohh no!" There's normally a click after that
    kwaizy