By Vamien McKalin | Apr 13, 2013 11:34 AM EDT
Being scammed by someone in another country is something that has been going on for ages but it's not often that a senior security researcher from Malwarebytes gets scammed.
The security researcher from Malwarebytes in question is Jerome Segura. Scammers from another country that appears to be India, called him up pretending to be Microsoft tech support. They claim Segura's computer is a haven for viruses and other software related problems, and that they can fix it.
Being too familiar with situations like this, Segura played along by pretending he has no idea what's going on while recording everything for future references.
When Segura received the first call, he immediately went ahead, turned on his Virtual Machine, and began recording the call on his computer screen. The first person he spoke to was a woman. She instructed Segura to have a look at his Event Viewer, which keeps a log of all Windows error reports. She proceeded to ask Segura to count the number of yellow warnings along with the number of red-cross marked errors. She then warned him by saying, "These errors and warnings are very much harmful for your computer. These are major problems and it doesn't matter if you have one or two errors or more than that. Each one has already started corrupting your whole computer system."
It didn't end there, she told him to enter the "Prefetch" folder. This folder keeps track of programs that have opened and how your computer starts up. However, for some strange reason, the scammer claims all the files in the folder are all malicious hacking files.
Not too long after, a male came on the phone pretending to be holding a Senior Management position. He instructed to Segura to download Team Viewer so that another person could assist him remotely. Few minutes later, someone effectively logged into Segura's computer, and immediately this person opened the web browser, went to paypal.com and asked Segura to log into his account and send them a one time payment of $299 to fully restore his computer.
Segura entered false credit card data, which got rejected, the scammer finally realized that he's the one being fooled and quickly took control of Segura's computer. Right away, he proceeded to delete files in anger and even went as far as to delete the network driver to send the computer offline, but not before calling Segura an "asshole."
Strangely, the other scammer still on the phone with Segura seems to be unaware of what has just happened when Segura asked why his files were deleted. However, it's the response of the male on the line that really made this event something to be remembered:
Segura: Yeah, but the technician called me an asshole, that's not very nice.
Male Scammer: Sorry?
Segura: The technician, he called me an asshole.
Male Scammer: The technician is always correct, the technician is always correct. If he's saying that you are something, then you must be.
If that is not the best thing you read on the Internet all day, then there is something terribly wrong.
Luckily, for Segura, no damage was done to his computer since he was in a Virtual Machine. Let this be a warning to all persons who use a computer - do not fall for scams like this.
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