Internet scam targets Gympie

POLICE are warning the public to be vigilant with internet security following reports of a scam targeting the Gympie region and Sunshine Coast.

Residents have reported a telephone-based credit card scam involving a group claiming to be from an online computer company calling victims at home, asking them to log on to their computers and to load the company’s website.

Upon doing so, victims are requested to run programs that give the impression there is something wrong with their computers.

 The offenders then offer to sell the victim’s software they claim will fix their computers, however, victims are unknowingly downloading software which trawls the computer looking for personal information (including credit card details) which is then sent to the offenders.

The offenders are said to be aggressive and usually hang up when challenged.

Scammers are also making calls to potential victims indicating they work for Microsoft and need to gain remote access to the victim’s computer to fix a bug in the system. 

The message from Detective Superintendent Brian Hay of the State Crime Operations Command Fraud and Corporate Crime Group was to always be careful of anti-virus pop ups and carefully check on anything before you hit “accept”.

Do not respond to messages or emails from anti-virus companies offering to run free scans on your computer or reminding you that your system requires its annual subscription upgrade.

These scams are now recognised as the third most successful scam in the world. 

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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