Kay's Microsoft "Locked" Computer Scam
- Category: Scammed
My sister, Kay was searching on the usual sites (Home Depot, Best Buy, Menards...) for a sale on a new washing machine.
If messages like these pop up, never ever click on the link or call the number. Ever.
Suddenly a screen popped up stating that she had visited restricted sites and Microsoft had locked her computer and she had to call "Microsoft Centre". It also told her do not shut down or she would lose her data and programs.
Slightly worried, she called the listed Microsoft number. A man told her he would have to access her computer to unlock it and that this would cost $600.
She said she only paid $350 for the laptop and she would get another one. He told her that the system was compromised, not her actual computer, and the freeze would be on whatever device she would log onto.
Distraught, she gave him her credit card number, after which he talked her through allowing him access to her computer and "fix" her system. Whatever he was doing took 2+ hours.
After the man was done and system was up and running fine again, my sister called me and told me the story.
Needless to say, I freaked. I told her Microsoft doesn't lock your system for you visiting sites, nor do they charge you for unlocking anything! We quickly called the credit card company and stopped the payment. And we reported the fraud to Microsoft.
Please note: If messages like these pop up, never ever click on the link or call the number. Ever. Close the popup, run a thorough virus scan, and reboot your system. Nothing will happen to your data or system! It is a scam.