January 17th, 2015

The “Microsoft” phone scam that’s nothing – and everything – to worry about

This scam has been doing the rounds for a while now but seems to be picking up again at the moment. We’re getting regular calls ourselves at the moment.

What happens is you get a phone call from someone pretending to be from Microsoft. They’re not. They’ll often be quite officious or even aggressive.

There’s different varieties of the scam. Some will ask you to check if a particular file is on your computer. When you discover it is they’ll ask for your credit card details to solve the problem. Of course, the file they’ve directed you to is one that should be there.

Other scammers will direct you to a webpage that will infect your computer. Some will ask you to download software or even to give them remote control of your computer. The outcome is the same. You’ve massively compromised the security of your computer and personal details.

A disaster.

Fortunately, it’s a problem that’s easy to avoid. The scammers have just got your name and number form a database. All they’re doing is calling people until they get some poor soul who’s taken in. So the answer is just hang up. Straight away. Don’t bother being polite. Don’t even bother being rude. Hang up and get on with your day.

And there’s one last thing you can do. Tell your friends and family about it as the scam relies on people being taken in. The more people know about it the less effective it is.

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by
Managing Director

Jonathan trained as a chartered accountant with Price Waterhouse (now PWC) in Liverpool before becoming a small business services manager for Grant Thornton in Warrington. He also spent three years as the financial controller for Brookside and Hollyoaks (not that he ever mentions it!).

Jonathan is recognised as a specialist in the entertainment industry and is often called upon to provide training courses and seminars for media professionals. He's also a bit of a technology geek and has been recognised with the accountancy industry as one of the most progressive accountants in the UK.
Outside of work Jonathan is very proud to be the Treasurer of the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace and to be on the Council of the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (LIPA)

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