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orthodoc 07-17-2018 08:23 PM

Hey, guys! I’ve been hiding out in Pennsyltucky working long days butting my head against a brick wall. I should have stayed in touch. Just been tired and overwhelmed. I need to catch up on things here.

fargon 07-17-2018 08:24 PM

Hiya Doc.

orthodoc 07-17-2018 08:29 PM

Hi fargon!

glatt 07-18-2018 07:53 PM

Mother in law was just a victim of a phishing scam.

Gave out bank account info.

These guys are good at what they do. The details are not clear, but there were multiple people who got her to give them access to her computer so they could fix it, and then bank routing information to pay for the service.

So we got her to take battery out of the laptop and understand that it's now the enemy. And she will go to little local bank when it opens to freeze the account. And she's going to give us all her various passwords so we can change everything from here. She is trying to remember all the information she gave them. I don't think she does much financial stuff on there.

What am I missing?

Undertoad 07-18-2018 08:02 PM


Listen to Reply All podcast episodes 102 and 103 to understand where all this shit is coming from. The Reply All gents explain it in a true-life, marvelously dramatic way.

xoxoxoBruce 07-18-2018 08:59 PM

I suspect tomorrow when the bank opens the money will be long gone. :(

Clodfobble 07-18-2018 09:21 PM

Maybe--banks are very aware of this sort of thing, and most have started limiting the amounts you can move quickly. It's a pain in the ass when you legitimately need to do something like buy a house or close an account, but as long as you realize your mistake and jump on it quickly, you can often get in ahead of the scammers. The real problem is when folks don't realize until weeks or months later what they've done. (Or when they get tricked into physically pulling the money out themselves--my stepgrandfather got suckered by a scheme that involved him buying iTunes giftcards and then reading the numbers to the guy over the phone.)

xoxoxoBruce 07-18-2018 11:02 PM

Could be, but we don't know when this happened, "just" could be hours or days. Scammers are probably smart enough to make numerous transactions below the bank's radar. Hopefully not.

glatt 07-19-2018 06:42 AM

My post was within an hour or so of her giving away the keys to the castle. All happened after hours.

We will see what they got soon enough.

She received an email receipt from them for a $300 transaction shortly after my post.

I actually hope they get the $300 just to drive the lesson home with her. I'm worried it will be the whole account balance, which she didn't know. At least a few thousand. Maybe over 10k? She has multiple accounts and only gave them the one.

My wife is debating driving the 4 hours down there this weekend.

MIL is still confused. Every once in a while she lets it slip that she was talking to Amazon and Cisco. She doesn't fully understand that it was all bad guys the whole time.

Is that laptop trash now? Or is there some reliable way to get all Spyware off it? Can't some spyware hide?

xoxoxoBruce 07-19-2018 07:40 AM

There may not be spyware, possibly they just told her something was wrong and they would fix it by giving them remote access... and paying for it of course.

Clodfobble 07-19-2018 07:59 AM

You can also put a fraud alert on her three major credit reports. Makes any new loans, etc. really hard for the next year, but will stop anyone from opening things in her name and stealing her identity along with her money.

xoxoxoBruce 07-19-2018 08:18 AM

And close all her bank accounts then send the cash to me for safe keeping. :apimp:

Undertoad 07-19-2018 09:02 AM


Is that laptop trash now? Or is there some reliable way to get all Spyware off it? Can't some spyware hide?
If you entirely reset it, like reinstall the OS, it should be fine;

My concern wouldn't even be with trojan horses, but with things like browser home page and bookmarks that have been added/altered. If you run an anti-virus full scan, it would find trojans, but it would be harder to figure out that the hackers have, say, switched out random URLs on the bookmarks bar.

Undertoad 07-19-2018 09:44 AM


In-person interview to be scheduled

~ it's happening!! ~
Is it? Hello? No word for four days...

*sigh* i'll just assume the deciders are on vacation this week

glatt 07-19-2018 06:31 PM

So the word from MIL is that she got to the bank before they did. The bank was extremely helpful. They closed her account and opened a new one for her. The manager at the bank called her pension and social security while she was there and arranged to have the direct deposits made into the new account. All her money is safe.

Her phone has been ringing off the hook from unknown numbers today, but she isn't answering.

She is going to take her laptop to her computer guy and pay him to erase everything off the hard drive and reinstall the system. She will lose some pictures but doesn't care.

She is incredibly lucky.

She had answered the phone last night because the caller ID said it was Amazon, and this was after she made an Amazon return.

She gets it now. They have her name and phone number and old credit card and bank info. They don't have her SS#

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