Hundreds of Australians have their webcams hacked and videos posted on YouTube in terrifying blackmail scam
- An online scam posing as computer help website is duping hundreds of Aussies
- Victims unknowingly filmed through own webcams providing ‘endorsements’
- A self described scam-baiter has busted the scam and posted video on Youtube
Hundreds of Australians are being duped by an online scam which takes control of users webcams and unknowingly films them.
The website looks like a legitimate computer help site listing a 1800-number users can call for computer assistance and many don’t even know they have been scammed until it’s too late.
The technicians then charge huge fees to fix non-existent problems and request users give them remote control over their computer.
Hundreds of Australians are being duped by an online scam which takes control of users webcams and unknowingly films them
The website looks like a legitimate computer help site listing a 1800-number users can call and many don’t even know they have been scammed until it’s too late
From this point the scammers can spy on users and gain access to personal details such as banking numbers.
The Youtube channel for the site has at least 30 videos from unsuspecting victims who have been unknowingly filmed providing ‘endorsements’ for the website.
A self-described scam-baiter has exposed the online scheme aimed at conning Australians out of thousands of dollars.
David, who requested his last name not be used as he has become a target of the scammers, uploaded his filmed interaction in which a man with an Indian accent proceeds to ‘fix’ his computer of fake problems.
‘Scam-baiting involves looking for scammers online, calling them up, pretending to be a victim, and then exposing what they do,’ David told ABC News.
‘I like to record the process using screen-recording software and then post the videos online.’
A particularly worrying aspect is that the criminals use an Australian 1800-number to lure victims in and provide a façade of authenticity.
David has collected several of these types of phone numbers over the last year and reported them to the telephone companies that host them.
Users should be wary they are accessing genuine contacts as scam websites like this one can look legitimate and use legitimate companies names (Adobe is not involved in this scam)
‘I’ve noticed even six months later they’re still being used by the same scammers,’ David said.
A representative from the telecommunications industry said that operators act quickly to shut down numbers being used inappropriately.
‘It is extremely difficult to guarantee that an individual or entity that purchases a number will not at some stage misuse it,’ Communications Allaince CEO John Stanton said in a statement.
Mr Stanton added, however, that proving that in advance can be problematic.
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