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December 16, 2013
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Fraudulent phone calls asking for private information

I have been receiving frequent “live” phone calls from heavily accented male voices purporting to represent Windows, telling of high risk of my computer being invaded and asking me to go to my computer and follow his directions over the phone.

It is such an obvious fraud that I wonder who would fall for such. But it must work because the number of such calls is increasing.

Be aware that their goal is for you to reveal your password and obtain access to all your messages, bank accounts, credit cards and the like.

However, you can get even by wasting their time, provided you have the time. When I get one of those calls, I try to sound sincere, ask them to hang on and say that I have to get my wife to the phone, as she is the technician, and I don’t hear well (both true). Then I do something else while they hang on.

I’m surprised how long some of them do wait and wait and wait.

I’m rather pleased with myself: “… You invade my home by phone, ready to steal from me, the least I can do is waste your time!” is my attitude.

Also be aware that the second best thing that can happen to them is for you to hang up on them (so they can dial again, trolling for suckers).

Have a little fun this holiday season … give criminals a hard time. But don’t forget to hang up the phone eventually.

Patrick Tobin

Nevada City

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The Union Updated Dec 16, 2013 04:34PM Published Dec 18, 2013 12:01AM Copyright 2013 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.