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18 August, 2012

CLSID scam

Last year I reported I had a long telephone conversation with computer scammer. About a year later today, I received a similar phone call. Since I had some time, I decided to play with them a bit.

Unlike Don's real-Windows super-powerful PC laptop, I don't have a real Windows computer. But I decided to follow her instruction: switching on the computer.
So I did (it was on already, I just need to launch Windows 7 under Parallels Desktop 7 for Mac).

The very strong Indian accent phone call claimed to be from Technical Department of Microsoft Windows because, allegedly, my computer has been sending out error messages. They were very helpfully trying to fix the computer for me.

Their new trick? CLSID. They know what my computer's CLSID is. As reported by David Harley, CLSID is not unique.

They insisted that my CLSID was reported to their system, and they are calling me to offer support. Except how they got my telephone number? They dodged the answer by claiming that Microsoft holds a database of Windows installed. Except, I never registered my telephone to Microsoft.

They tried to be sound geeky (or make it sound they are very technical), they told me to hit Windows key + R, and type CMD (to launch DOS command window), then type ASSOC. Which, the scammer will read out the CLSID to you, which should be as below:
ZFSendToTarget=CLSID\{888DCA60-FC0A-11CF-8F0F-00C04FD7D062}
So, they claimed that it must be from my computer. As I mentioned early, CLSID was not unique, but I decided to continue to play with them.

So the next step was to ask me go to www.teamviewer.com website, and to download a software that allows remote controlling of my computer. I was not that stupid of course.

Instead of telling you to visit that web page from your browser (as normally people would do so), they instructed people to hit Windows key + R, and type www.teamviewer.com. Which the web page loads on your default browser. I turned off the wi-fi on that computer and used a proxy server from another computer to check what that www.teamviewer.com was about.

The next instruction? Download the software and run the software. I hesitated. After a silent on their end, I ended the phone.

They called back straight away. Apparently, they had Laurent's name (since this telephone line was registered to his name) and demanded to speak to him.

Although I am not as geek as our good friend Don who lives in picturesque Quincy near beautiful Boston, I am not that easy to be tricked by those computing scamming thing.

Also, it is a good idea to enable the Caller ID on your telephone. All "private" (hidden numbers) and "overseas" calls (and interstate calls in my case) have a very high change of being telemarketing/scamming calls, so you can be prepared at first.

related blog entry:
free malicious and junk files checking service (23 August, 2011)

Posted by Antony on 18 August 2012 5:52 PM |

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comments
Thanks for sharing this information. I've been reading about this particular scam, especially at Callercenter.com, and I'm amazed at how good the scammers are in technical stuffs. I wonder, if they'd only use that knowledge to do a decent job,. I bet they'd be bosses by now.
Posted by Penny on 21 August 2012 4:17 AM.
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