Long time readers know that The Engineer is no ordinary, geeky, anti-social, one-track mind “normal” engineer. He's also an inventor. My house looks the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang...as does my backyard. It's all good though. We are SO going to win the zombie-apocalypse! I did find out another fun character trait just this week though, which is rather amazing since we'll be celebrating 30 years together come December.
He likes to mess with telemarketers. He especially likes to mess with fraudulent ones. Me, when I smell a scam, I hang up, and not so politely. The Engineer? He likes to play along, then try to get them off script, and then smother them with technical questions.
He got a phone call last week from a “Microsoft” tech support guy in India kindly letting him know that his computer had been scanned and contained some malware, but all he had to do was go to their website, download the solution, and it would remove it. Not being an idiot, The Engineer began asking a LOT of questions. To his credit, this fake tech guy COULD keep up with most of them, until he asked, “So what kind of system am I running?” The guy said, “Well sir, it doesn't matter. Our software works with any system.” “Well if you know so much about me, why can't you answer this simple question?” Mr. Tech, of course didn't know anything, and when called on it, went on to explain that they were actually NOT from Microsoft tech support, but an independent company trying to sell their software. The Engineer left the conversation with a polite, “I don't need your service, thanks for your time.”
He then looked it up, and it's the latest scam going around. IF you've accidentally fallen for it and gone to the website and downloaded anything, you should shut off your computer and call all your financial institutions immediately. Good luck – you're identity has just been stolen.
I guess they don't give up easily, or there are multiple scammers out there using the same strategy, because of course he gets another call. This time, he interrupts very quickly with, “So what you're asking me to do is go to your website, download a virus that will give you access to all my personal information and then you'll use that information to steal my identity.” The guy ACTUALLY SAID, “Well yes, and WTF are you going to do about it?” The Engineer calmly says, “Hang up on you and tell as many people as I can about this.”
So he asked me to write this post and tell all ya'lls. You're welcome.