He never introduced himself but I was able to get his phony name, Brian Carter. Interesting enough Brian Carter had a strong Asian accent and he was calling from supposedly
existing in Toronto Windows Service Centre; however, he failed to mention Microsoft.
The conversation lasted for about 20 minutes and he almost had me, more like scared me that my computer is completely infected and it will soon blow up. He give away his identity with few interesting comments, and not until the moment when he asked for remote access to my computer, I realized – cyber crime is happening at my home in Aurora.
Its been a while since my wacky aurora hub
posts and what happened today fits perfectly.
So here is the conversation I recall.
Brian Carter: Hi am calling from the Windows Service Centre and we have been seeing strange activity on your computer. Your computer is possibly infected with the malware or malicious software.
Me: Excuse me, you are able to see activity on my computer?
Brian Carter: You have registered Windows product with us and we have been monitoring your computer. We noticed strange activity so that is why we are calling you to let you know that we can help you clean things up.
Me: Strange, that you are able to see activity on my computer.
Brian Carter: Your address is
spells out my full address where I live. We are calling you because what is happening with your computer is not good. We have noticed suspicious activity and calling to let you know and help you fix it.
Me: Let me put you on hold.
I put him on hold and ran up to my computer room. I looked at the computer and the Internet was disconnected.
Me: Hi again. You said you are seeing strange activity on my computer now. My computer is not connected to the Internet.
Brian Carter: Not now but we have been monitoring your computer for three months now and we have reports that you have strange activity.
Me: Let me login to my computer.
Brian Carter: You are logging in?
I remembered distinctly that he was surprised that I was logging in. He is probably realizing at that point that I am not going to be an easy bait. I realized that he also did not know my name. Usually with registration you get the whole package of information.
Me: Okay, you said I have malware. Now, how can you tell?
Brian Carter: I will tell you. Click on the right side start button.
I think he meant left side. Find Computer on the right menu, and then right click and choose Manage. To make long story short he just simply got me to Windows logs.
Me: Okay, what are we looking for then.
Brain Carter: You see the list, some say Information. There are some Warnings and Errors. These are files that are infecting your computer and they grow and grow and eventually they will shut down your computer.
In the mean time all I am seeing that these files are just Windows log files for installation of updates etc, some warnings and some errors. Can I delete them by myself.
Brain Carter: Aha, how many file do you see, 5, 10?
Me: I am still scrolling. I cannot count them there are too many.
Brain Carter: I want to show you something else. These are all files under Applications. Go and click on System files.
He is giving me speech again how my computer can be destroyed by malware or small hacks. See all these files. How many do you see? 5, 10?
Me: Okay, I think you know that I have more than that.
Brian Carter: Oh my goodness. We have some cleaning to do.
This was the point when I figured he was a hacker. Not calling me by name; showing me just computer log files and not malicious files; talking about Norton Internet Security and how great software it is and still totally not secure. Telling me HP computers have security flaws. And also how two computers not networked but connected to one Internet Service Provided can still get infected from each other. I was getting more paranoid because I knew his mission and I was almost sucked in.
I realized that my computer was fine and I was talking to the hacker who was on the mission to hack my computer and possibly install malicious application. Oh well I decided to continue the conversation.
Me: So what is the next step. You are saying I cannot delete them myself? Is there an application that can do that for me instead of you?
Brian Carter: No, no there is none. That is why we are calling you. We can help you out.
Me: How? You obviously need access to my computer to do that. Am I right?
Brain Carter: Yes, and you can see what I will do.
Me: I think we have to stop right here. I am not the only user of this computer, and actually my husband is the one that maintains it. So I will not allow anyone access our computer without his authorization.
Brain Carter: But the task is very simple. You said that it was your computer.
Me: It is our computer. I don’t know you and I will not let anyone access my computer.
Brain Carter: We can do this in no time. We don’t need your husband. I will navigate your computer and if you see something you don’t like you can disconnect.
Me: As I said I will not do so. Is there are number I can call you back?
Brain Carter: When your husband be home? Can I call back at that time?
Me: I don’t know. He has variable schedule and it is better we call you back. Do you have number I can reach you at?
Brain Carter: Yes, here it is 678-666-0122.
This is a number he gave me.
Me: Oh this is not 1-800 number.
Brain Carter: No.
Me: Where are you calling from and by the way what is your name?
Brain Carter: Toronto. Brain Carter.
Spelled his phony name for me.
Me: And Windows has office in Toronto. What time are you open to?
Brain Carter: Yes, we do. You can call until 7 p.m.
He had to think about the time.
Me: Are you directly working for Windows or are you contractor?
Getting annoyed. I am authorized Windows Technician. Just hang up now and call me again to verify the number.
Me: No that will not be necessary. If we think there is an issue we will call you later. Please understand that I do not allow anyone who calls us to access our computer. I don’t feel comfortable. I don’t know who you are even if you are telling me who you are. It is so easy these days to be scammed. I really don’t know if you are telling the truth.
Brian Carter: I completely understand. Please call us back.
Me: Good bey.
Brian Carter: Good bey.
How ironic this whole conversation was. Later, I was thinking may be he will give up his cyber crime activities after the nice concluding conversation we had. I think he got a bit sucked in to and given me enough of his information to find out more about him on the Internet. We never called him back and probably this number does not exist anymore.
The lesson is – do not do any business over the phone, especially when that someone calls you first.
I will keep you updated if he calls back.
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