Scammers strike on Darling Downs using sneaky method

IF at first you don't succeed, try, try again. That's the mantra of scammers who are targeting victims across the Darling Downs.

Oakey man Craig Commens said he was receiving multiple calls a day from scammers claiming to be from Telstra.

They inform him they are disconnecting his internet for 15 days because of supposed illegal activity on his Telstra account.

Their ultimate goal is to convince residents to turn on their computer, so they can take control for malicious purposes.

Mr Commens said the attempts were becoming widespread, particularly in the country around Toowoomba.

"They called one elderly couple who informed the scammers they didn't have a computer or internet - and they got quite rude because they didn't believe them - but they didn't.

"I spoke to Telstra about this and they confirmed they knew about the scammers."

Craig Commens has been targeted by scammers.
Craig Commens has been targeted by scammers. Bev Lacey

Consumer group SCAMwatch and Telstra are warning consumers to hang up the phone if they receive a call out of the blue from someone claiming there is a problem with their internet connection or computer.

The ruse isn't new, with SCAMwatch warning in 2014 that there had been a surge in recent months in reports of scammers calling people at home.

The callers were raising a false alarm that they are at risk of their internet being disconnected immediately, as their computer has been hacked or infected with malware and is threatening Telstra's internet infrastructure.

The caller claims that they are able to fix the problem on the spot, however a fee for this service will need to be paid and the person will also need to download software that will allow the caller remote access to their computer.

For ways to avoid being scammed and to protect yourself visit scamwatch.gov.au.


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