Mom messed up fell for tech support scam

She said she was trying to find a pheasant recipe online and the next thing she knew her screen had warnings and said to call this number to fix it. Obviously a scam I know, but she called the number and gave them access to her computer. She then left it on and left it for 8 hours. She called me when she got home and couldn’t log on her computer. She has carbonite but doesn’t remember the password. Its basically a mess and I was just going to reset the computer to factory settings but she “can’t” lose her outlook contact files. Any advice?

The content was posted by tohosrealreddit on 2019-11-28 09:38:50 via reddit

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  1. She needs to quite literally call every bank of hers tomorrow. Every dollar she owns is at risk. Possibly, they could have already had all her savings stolen.

    This is not to be taken lightly. This is a life-altering fuck-up. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving but some places still have open lines of customer support. This is unfortunate but you can NOT spend much time tomorrow doing normal stuff. You need damage control NOW.

  2. > her outlook contact files

    Aren’t they available online at

    > She then left it on and left it for 8 hours

    Has she checked her financial accounts from a different device? Has she checked all of her email accounts for unauthorized changes? She needs to change all of her passwords from a different device and implement two factor authentication for every account that supports it. If there was any private financial data stored on the computer, it must be assumed that the information was taken by the scammers.

  3. This happened to my dad a while back. I heard midway through the conversation. I checked to make sure they didn’t install anything and ran malawarebytes just in case. He didn’t have any info saved on his laptop. In the end nothing happened. Your poor mother.

  4. I was looking up turkey recipes yesterday and had the same warning pop up. I was caught a little off guard because I was browsing recipes – something boring and mundane. I immediately closed all my tabs but I can understand how your mom fell for it – the warnings look scary.

  5. Thank you sharing, and best of luck as you help her recover from this! She’s lucky to have you around and able to help. This kind of thing seems egregious and unfathomable, but it makes me wonder what kinds of scams I will be vulnerable to later in life as I adopt new and unfamiliar technologies…

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