Microsoft Windows Cleaning Scam Bilks Laval Couple out of $500

PHOTO: MATTHEW BOWDEN

A Laval couple were victims of a scam that resulted in credit card charges of about $500.

Sandra Snitzer says she and her husband were on the phone for nearly two-and-a-half hours speaking with scammers who claimed to be from Microsoft's Windows IT department.

The individuals used high pressure tactics to convince the Snitzers that, unless they handed over their credit card information and computer passwords they would be 'locked-out' of their new computer.

Though the Snitzers were suspicious they ultimately provided their credit card and other personal information. Soon thereafter they noticed three charges of $167. Though the money was refunded by their bank, the Snitzers are still getting calls from the scammers.

Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre spokesperson Daniel Williams cautions victims of the well-known scam that even if they get their money back scammers routinely leave backdoors open to retrieve files and other sensitive, personal information later on.

Further, Mr. Williams reminded CJAD that Microsoft does not contact the public directly, and that the scammers are literally calling every single number listed in the phonebook, without prior knowledge of whether the people they're calling even own a PC or use Microsoft software.

The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre insists the best way to dissuade the scammers is to politely inform them you no longer use windows or own a PC, and to thank them for their concern.

Aggravating the scammers could result in hundreds of follow-up calls for which Canadians have no real recourse.

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  1. Ray S posted on 04/11/2014 05:55 PM
    As long as people keep falling for these scams, the scammers will be in business.

    Honestly, who is NOT aware of these?

    This clearly supports the fact that a sucker is indeed born every minute!
  2. Tina posted on 04/12/2014 12:59 PM
    They call me this week. The minute they said who they were I went off on them and they hung up on me. These people are idiots.
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