Lindsay man scammed out of $4,000 after computer ‘hacked’

Police in Kawartha Lakes are reminding the public to be suspicious of pop-up that appear on computers and other electronic devices after a Lindsay man was scammed out of $4,000.

According to police, the victim attended the police station on Tuesday (May 21) to report the incident.

“Earlier that same day, the victim was using his home computer when the screen went blank and a message appeared stating that the computer had been ‘hacked’ and was now infected with a computer virus,” reads a media release.

“A link appeared on the computer screen which informed the victim he could obtain assistance from a Microsoft computer technician. The victim clicked on the link and was put in contact with a person who claimed to work for Microsoft. The victim was informed that his computer could be fixed remotely, and that he could pay for the service by using Google Play gift cards.”

Over the course of the day, police say the victim purchased a total of $4,000 in Google Play cards, and supplied the gift card numbers to the person posing as a Microsoft employee.

“Once the individual gift card numbers were supplied, the fraudster was able to transfer the balance on the gift cards for his own personal use,” the media release reads.

Officers are urging residents to “think twice” before agreeing to pay for a service using store-bought gift cards.

“And if you believe you have been victimized by a fraud, do not be embarrassed,” the media release reads.

“Please contact your local police service immediately, as well as your bank and credit card companies and report the incident.”

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