All Aussies out there, listen up

There’s another scam about, people.

Just got a call from someone claiming to represent Telstra, telling me that my computer was downloading corrupt and hacking files whenever I connected to the internet, and that unless I fixed it by the end of the day, my internet connection would be terminated and I’d be blacklisted for three months. The fact that my ISP is Optus was apparently irrelevant – Telstra has umbrella powers.

Not this little black duck, I said (less politely). Give me a phone no. I’ll look into it and call you back.

Then I rang Telstra.

Here’s the important bit.

DON’T PANIC (as I was tempted to do but didn’t) AND ATTEMPT TO FOLLOW THEIR INSTRUCTIONS. This would give them access to your computer, banking details etc, and also cost you ongoing amounts of money to ‘refix’ every six months or so.

I’m not usually gullible about these things, but the thought of losing internet access for three months is enough to curdle the most logical brain.

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15 Responses to All Aussies out there, listen up

  1. Scammers are pesky. We keep our land line turned off and check messages about once a week or so. We’ve gotten maybe two legitimate messages in the last year or so. Almost all the callers that get our voice mail hang up, so they are probably scammers of some type or another, even though we are supposed to be on the “no call list!”

  2. Hacking has become a billion dollar industry. One way to double check a suspicious email is to click the little thinging at the end of an address that is just from “joe” or a suspicious name. Doing that will show the complete email address and if it’s comes from Zimbobwai or third world location it’s probably an attempt to get inside your computer and steal whatever they can lay hands on.

  3. They’ve modified the script. When they rang me a few weeks ago, they hung up when I told them my internet wasn’t with Telstra. That was after I strung them along for a good five minutes. “You’re with Telstra? Oh. And there’s something wrong with my internet? Oh. What did you say was wrong again?” etc etc THEN I said “Well, that’s weird because I don’t have internet with Telstra.”

    I actually love these calls. We treat it as a game in our house. Once, I pretended to follow the instructions and then told the woman there was smoke coming out of my computer. Then I started yelling at her that she’d set my computer on fire. She kept trying to stick the script and I kept yelling “What did you do?!?” The kids were in hysterics. She hung up eventually. 🙂

  4. Martha Kennedy says:

    They CALLED YOU!? Outrageous. Seriously.

  5. I’m glad you dodged that bullet. There is a similar scam here. Callers, usually with a foreign (to me) accent claim that “my Windows may be compromised.” The try to get you in a panic and then come to the rescue. My brother got one of the calls. “My windows are broken?? Oh no, oh no, how is that possible? They look fine to me. I can see outside just perfectly.” And so on.

  6. Here in the US we also get scam callers. I’ve long had the idea for an invention I think many people would buy. It would be an electronic device that would fit snugly over the mouthpiece of the phone and if one got a scam call or an annoying unsolicited sales call, when one got the call, one would say, “Could you hold on a minute the person you need to talk to will pick up in a moment.” Then place my invention over the mouth piece, press a button and it lets out a powerful ear-shattering screech so loud it would be guaranteed to teach the caller a lesson: “I’ll never make a call to that number again.”

  7. Jenni says:

    We had something similar not that long ago, fortunately I have very little problem being extremely rude to companies who call of an evening [even if it was legit]. Glad you didn’t get scammed.

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