Scammer gains remote access to McCracken Co. woman's computer - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Scammer gains remote access to McCracken Co. woman's computer

(Source: Raycom Media) (Source: Raycom Media)

The McCracken County Sheriff’s Office was contacted by a Farley, Kentucky resident Saturday night, August 13 after she came close to losing several thousand dollars to a scam artist.

The resident reported to authorities that she had been receiving several unsolicited calls for computer technical support. She said the calls were believable because had been having some computer issues.

The victim stated that she was on the computer Saturday when she received another phone call. The caller stated that he wanted to refund some money that she had paid for technical support since his company was unable to resolve her situation. The resident did not think that she had paid money for technical support, but said she could not remember for sure.

The scammer convinced the resident to allow him to deposit a sum of $2,500 into her checking account. During this attempted fraud, the offender was able to gain remote access to her computer. This type of connection is sometimes used by technical support entities to resolve computer issues from a different location. This type of connection, when properly administered, requires the computer owner to grant access for the remote connection.

Once connected to the victim's computer, the scammer had the resident access her online banking account. He transferred a sum of money into her checking account while she watched him as he moved the computer’s cursor. In reality, the scammer transferred the sum of money from her saving account to her checking account. It is believed at this point he had all of the information he needed to make a withdrawal from her checking, including her account number and routing number.

The scammer then asked her to go to a local location where she could buy a money order and transfer a portion of the money back to him. This caused a great deal of suspicion with the resident, which then prompted her to contact her banking institution.

It was at this time when it was discovered that he actually just transferred money from her savings account to her checking account.  The bank was able to intervene and prevent a monetary loss.

As of yet, the investigation has not been able to determine how the remote access was acquired. The most likely method for this to have occurred is through an email that contained a program or by directly typing in an internet link that would grant access.

This is the first time the McCracken County Sheriff’s Office has been made aware of a local resident having been scammed by these means. Legitimate companies should not ask for unsolicited remote access to your computer or personal banking information.  If you become suspicious never hesitate to contact your financial institution immediately.

As evidenced in this incident, the resident’s prompt notification to her bank’s fraud department was able to prevent a fraudulent transaction.

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