This week: Watch out! Part -2
The next scam I worked on involved a client getting a call from a person claiming to be from “Windows Security” and asking if her PC was running slow. She replied that it was and her tech had worked on it recently and it was better, but the guy on the phone said he could still make it faster, and he had her go into “start then run” and type in some commands that displayed some error logs showing PC errors in red that the guy claimed were malware. He then asked if he could access the PC, which she allowed him via am internet remote control program. He was playing around for a few minutes when my client asked how much it would cost, to which he replied “$100.” At that point, she said she did not want it, and he said, “I am in your machine and I want your credit card number.” At this point, she hung up on him. But when she rebooted her machine, it came up to a password screen that locked access to Windows.
The lesson here is: do not talk to people claiming they are from Windows, Microsoft, or any other well-known computer company. No company can see inside your PC via the Internet without your cooperation to allow access to it, nor would they know how slow it is. Everyone’s PC does not run as fast as they’d like, but do not believe the ads on TV or the people on the other end of a phone call; there is VERY little one can do to a running PC to speed it up. Errors, for the most part, do not cause slowdowns, and cleaning up the hard drive will not speed up the PC; the only things that will speed up an older machine is more RAM, and even that is limited based on the age and the speed of the of the motherboard and CPU and/or installing a faster SSD hard drive.
I have been trying to remove the password on this PC, but passwords are easy to install and next to impossible to remove or hack. So at this point, there are only two options-- a new PC or reloading this old slow one. Both options cost more than $100. So if you get a cold call from a nice young person saying they can speed up your machine, hang up and under no circumstance give them access to your PC or your credit card number. We have no way to know what else he took when he was in the PC; he could have down loaded every file. On the bright side, the crook was not able to password protect the hard drive, so all of the data, photos, and information are available to save and put on a new machine or back on the reloaded hard drive--an expensive lesson.
‘til next week
Robert - 360-497-3130 Cell
Please send your questions to
snail mail to:
P. O. Box 372
Randle, WA 98377
Index to Past ComputerFAQ Columns:
June 26, 2013 PC SCAM - Part 2
June 19, 2013 PC Money SCAM - READ THIS
June 12, 2013 CAUTION New Viruses AND Trojans
June 5, 2013 WIFI vs Cable
May 29, 2013 On-Line Help-BEWARE
May 22, 2013 Faxing With Multi-Function Printers
May 15, 2013 Scanners and Software
May 8, 2013 Battery Replacement May Be Necessary
May 1, 2013 Zombies Search Your Personal Info
April 24, 2013 Java and Adobe Updates NOT to be Ignored
April 17, 2013 Passwords And Email
April 10, 2013 Spring Cleaning-The Inside
April 3, 2013 Spring Cleaning for Your PC
March 27, 2013 Microsoft WORKS Great Substitute for Office
March 20, 2013 Windows 8 UPDATE
March 13, 2013 Helpful Equipment
March 6, 2013 Build Your Own PC
February 27, 2013 Build Your Own PC
February 20, 2013 More Help with Viruses
February 13, 2013 VIRUSes How Did I Get It?????
February 6, 2013 VIRUSes EXPECT A BAD YEAR!
January 23, 2013 Protect Your Computer from JAVA Vulnerability
January 16, 2013 Driver Update Managers
January 9, 2013 Unwanted Programs & Tools Bars
January 2, 2013 Randome Loss Of Interne
December 19, 2012 Recovery Disks
December 12, 2012 Warranty Service Part 2