Fraudsters pretending to be employees of Microsoft are contacting Icelanders by both letter and telephone.
MBL reports that one of the most common tactics these fraudsters will use will be to call people on their home phones, purporting to be employees of Microsoft. These fraudsters tell the potential victim that Microsoft has detected a virus on their computer, and that in order to be rid of it, they must go to a specific website to download and install “virus removal software”.
In reality, these are not people calling from Microsoft, who cannot see into your computer to look for viruses anyway, and the “virus removal software” in question is a virus itself. This virus seems to be a simple keylogger, which secretly reports to the fraudsters everything the victim types on their computer – including sensitive financial information.
Another tactic these fraudsters use can be seen in the above image: a letter, bearing the Microsoft letterhead and informing the potential victim that they have won some sort of sweepstakes. Qualifying for receiving the grand prize, however, involves divulging personal information that can be used for fraud or identity theft.
Microsoft Iceland told reporters that the company is running no such sweepstakes.
“Unfortunately, there are numerous examples of people who have lost a lot of money due to swindles such as this,” a statement from Microsoft Iceland reads. “This can also lead to additional viruses making their way onto the computer. Some computers have had to be completely rebuilt from their foundations, with all the data inside lost.”
It is unknown at the time of this writing how many people have fallen prey to these scams.