VERMILLION CO., Ind. (WTHI) - Multiple calls have been made from Vermillion County residents to the VC Sheriff's Office about being scammed on their computers.
The scammer(s) introduce themselves as Microsoft employees, then inform the victims of viruses and infections on the computer that need fixed.
The scammer(s) will tell the victim they need access to the victim's computer to fix the problems.
If the victim agrees to let the scammer(s) work on the victim's computer, the scammer(s) then require the victim to give the scammer(s) access to either the victim's credit card, bank account or PayPal account.
If the victim falls for that step, the scammers instantly charge anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dollars from the victim.
The scammer(s) remain under control of the victim's computer the entire time, until the local internet connection is stopped.
The Vermillion County Sheriff's Office said Microsoft employees will never call customers about fixing computers. They are a software and operating system company. They DO NOT fix computers.
The calls from the scammer(s) are originating from outside the United States, and show up on caller ID as non-working numbers.
If you fell victim to this scam, call your local law enforcement immediately. They will help you take the proper steps to making sure the problem doesn't worsen.
Some other safe steps to take are:
- Unplug the internet connection from your computer,
- Call your bank, credit card lender, PayPal customer service and describe the situation,
- Make sure to call a computer repair technician through your respective computer provider (HP, Dell, Toshiba, Sony, etc.), or call a trusted computer technician locally to help fix your computer.
- If possible, from a friend or neighbor's computer logon to your social media site accounts (Facebook, YouTube, etc.) and change the passwords, make it more difficult.
While the internet connection is unplugged, backup the important information on your computer.
To backup information means to, make copies of the important documents, photos and other personal information you want to save, in case a reinstallation of your operating system is necessary.
You may do this either with a portable zip drive or portable hard drive.
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