genuine on line 'support' firm?

  philc57 07:16 18 Oct 2014

Advice please.

My elderly neighbour uses BT's webmail service. This week, BT have had problems. Yesterday morning, finding that she wasn't able to access her account, she googled something like 'bt main support' and found a web site with a number, which she called.

Under the impression that she was speaking to BT, she described her problem to the 'engineer' on the other end. He said that he could fix the problem at a cost of £200. She agreed to this, and gave him her debit card details. He also asked for, and got, her Windows password, her mother's maiden name and her DoB. She let him access her PC, tho' she's not sure how this was done. He was apparently logged on to it for an hour or so.

He told her that, in addition to her email problem, there were 'lots of other things' wrong with her PC and that 'someone from China' had been trying to hack it.

She told me about this a few hours later. I checked her PC. There was a new icon in the taskbar which gets straight into her BT mail account without having to enter a password. I also got a popup which said something about not disabling Unlimited Universal Access, but unfortunately I didn't take much notice of it. Otherwise the PC behaves as it did before.

She runs Win7 and has up-to-date MS Security Essentials. A full scan of the PC comes up clear.

I've advised her to cancel her debit card and change her password.

Questions.. • has she been conned? • is there any way of finding out what was actually done on the machine to justify the £200?

  onthelimit1 08:45 18 Oct 2014

I would say yes, she's been conned. BT would not ask for that sort of info, and would not charge £200. The fact they now have DoB and mother's name is worrying - if she does any online banking, she should change password and memorable info, as a precaution. As she paid by credit card, she should speak to her card provider - if she can convince them that she has been conned, she should get a refund.

  spuds 10:41 18 Oct 2014

I know its probably easy for me to say this, but this scam as been around for a long time and as been well documented.

Sound advice from onthelimit1, and I would certainly get in touch with the credit card company and possibly CAB for further help.

"Otherwise the PC behaves as it did before." And this is the problem, because there is no telling what was done to the computer. Run a series of scans like MWB, SAS, ADW, and see if they reveal anything. You might want to download and try Malwarebytes Anti-Rootkit, which I have found to be good for finding things click here

  rdave13 10:44 18 Oct 2014

I would also be worried about what exactly has been installed on her PC. It sounds as if a remote access program is one software that has been installed by the sounds of Unlimited Universal Access pop-up.

Some good information here that is similar to this situation. Have a look at the Recovering from the scam section especially.

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