The NSW Police Fraud and Cybercrime Squad has issued a warning about a cold call scheme, which involves malicious software to be downloaded.
Computer users at Dubbo and across the state are urged to be vigilant.
It is believed the caller asks the victim to download a software program which then shows several errors on the computer, due to being hacked, NSW police report.
A request for money to be sent overseas is then made indicating it will help local police make arrests.
Commander of the Fraud and Cybercrime Squad Superintendent Arthur Katsogiannis said people should be wary of any contact over the phone, and if they believed they had been a victim of the scam to contact police immediately.
“These scammers will continue to come up with innovative ways to scam innocent victims; however, our messages continue to remain – if in doubt, report it to police,” he said.
“If you have a feeling you have been scammed, inform police and the Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network and Scamwatch. Stay Smart Online has information on recognising scams and hoaxes.”
Police urge people to take precautions to cut the risk. They include:
• Never provide your personal or banking details to a person who cold calls you;
• Be careful what personal information you provide over the phone, even if you are the person who made the call;
• Never provide your financial PIN or account passwords over the phone;
• If you have been cold called on a landline, consider making any further calls on a different phone or check that the line is free by calling someone you know first;
• If you are suspicious about the credentials of a person on the phone, ask questions – what’s their street address, telephone number, Australian Financial Services Number – if they avoid answering
• You can still receive scam calls even if you have a private number or have listed your number on the Australian Government’s Do Not Call Register (link is external). Scammers can obtain your number fraudulently or from anywhere it has been publicly listed such as in a phone book.
• Don’t let scammers pressure you – scammers use detailed scripts to convince you that they’re the real deal and create a high pressure situation to make a decision on the spot.
• Always keep your computer security up to date with anti-virus and anti-spyware software, and a good firewall. Only buy computer and anti-virus software from a reputable source.
• Never give a stranger remote access to your computer, even if they claim to be from a reputable business.
• If you think your computer’s security has been compromised, use your security software to run a virus check. If you still have doubts, contact your anti-virus software provider or a computer specialist.
• If you think you have provided your account details to a scammer, contact your bank or financial institution immediately.
• If you have lost money as a result of this type of scam please report the matter to your local Police Station.
• You can also report scams to the ACCC via the SCAMwatch report a scam page or by calling 1300 795 995.