Recently Boise Police has been in contact with multiple citizens who have fallen victim to a computer repair scam. The victims either received a phone call from a company claiming the victim’s computer was infected with viruses and other malware OR got a pop up screen on their computer making a similar claim, telling the victim to call a number to assist with the problems.
Once on the phone with the company, they sign them up for services or repairs, gaining access to their computer and banking accounts to pay for the services, which usually costs a few hundred dollars.
The victim is later contacted by the company claiming incompatible with the company’s software or other issues. The company will process a “refund” to the victim, accidentally crediting their bank account too much money. To return the money back, they direct the victim to specific retailers to purchase gift cards. Once the gift cards are purchased they give them the card information.
The victim’s later realize since the company had bank account access, they moved money between accounts to make it look like their account was refunded too much money. The last two victims have lost $5,500 and $6,500.
The warnings would be:
- Beware of unsolicited phone calls claiming computer issues
- Beware of pop ups on your computer claiming issues, asking you to call phone numbers or click on links
- Beware of agencies, companies, individuals demanding gift cards for payments for services, fines, etc.
- If you believe your computer has a virus or other problems, disconnect it from the internet and take it to a computer professional.
If you think you might be involved in a scam, do not give any money or information.
AARP’s Fraud Watch Network can help you spot and avoid scams. Sign up for free “watchdog alerts," review our scam-tracking map, or call our toll-free fraud helpline at 877-908-3360 if you or a loved one suspect you’ve been a victim.
This story is provided by AARP Idaho. Visit the AARP Idaho page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.
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