"Sir, there's something wrong with your computer" - No one is safe from scams, even the Police

"Sir, there's something wrong with your computer" - No one is safe from scams, even the Police


Last night, one of our own staff was phoned at home by someone from overseas they didn’t know and he's sure it was a scam. Detective Sergeant Heath Jones, says, “There were approximately three or four calls throughout the evening as they tried to connect with us and the number was definitely from overseas.  The first calls were straight hang ups. When they were finally able to connect and speak to me it was a male sounding of Indian or Middle Eastern descent. In the back ground there was the noise of a ‘busy office’ with male and female voices. It very much sounded like a call centre.  
They told me I had a ‘computer problem’ and of course, I didn’t, but I pretended I did for a while, to see what would happen. The man wanted me to follow his instructions to fix it, including typing ‘support.me' into a search engine.   Eventually they hung up, when I didn’t do as they asked, but   I am concerned that other people in the Eastern District are being targeted too and may be tricked into giving them access to their computers.

Remember these few things if you are getting strange phone calls from people who tell you your computer is broken and want you to follow their instructions to get it fixed,” he says.
·        Any scams, including those involving violence or a threat of violence is of concern and is taken seriously by Police
·        While violence may not always be used, any scam can be traumatic for the victims, and Police is committed to providing them with appropriate support and preventing further victimisations
·        From time to time scammers who claim they are doing something legitimate, often end up being deceptive and getting access to your system passwords, accounts and bank details
·        These people can be persistent or even aggressive
·        They may sound genuine using personal details of the person they are scamming which could sound genuine
·        Our advice to anyone who thinks they are the target of a scam, is to say no.  Warn others and prevent your friends and family from becoming a victim of a similar scam.

- If it doesn't seem right, be cautious, double-check details first
- Do not pay money to anyone you have never met or over the internet or over the phone
- Look after your personal details in the same way you would your wallet and other possessions
- Your personal details are also very valuable to  scammers, they will use your details to take out loans or run up debts if they can
- Be aware of common scams;  For example, banks, Immigration New Zealand or Inland Revenue never email, call or text customers to ask for  money to be sent using money transfer services
(Please note, that no banks will ask you to give them your pin number).

If you have been targeted by a scam, report it immediately by visiting the Scamwatch website at www.consumerprotection.govt.nz/scams 

Issued by Police Media Centre