ATTORNEY GENERAL MADIGAN WARNS ILLINOIS RESIDENTS OF
Chicago — Attorney General Lisa Madigan today reported Illinois residents are being targeted by phone scammers who pose as representatives of Microsoft or related technology support service providers, claiming to have detected viruses or malware on targets’ computers to trick them into providing remote computer access or convincing targets to pay for unnecessary software fixes. Madigan’s office has received several complaints from Central Illinois residents who have received these calls.
As part of this scam, cybercriminals use publicly available phone directories to ascertain computer users’ names and other personal information when they call, according to Microsoft. The scammers might even guess what operating system users have on their computers. Once the scammers gain the target's trust, they typically ask for a user name and password or ask the target to install software that will let them access the target computer to “fix” the supposed problem. But instead of providing any service, they trick the target into installing malware that could steal sensitive data.
“If you receive a call like this, hang up the phone immediately,” Attorney General Madigan said. “Legitimate companies will not initiate a call to you and ask you for personal information. This is an outright scam.”
Madigan also offered the following tips to avoid falling victim to this scam: