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Cybersecurity – TIP of the Week – Be very wary of anyone wanting to remote into your computer


One social engineering technique is a scammer advising you that your device has a virus or been doing something suspicious. They pretend to be from a reputable company and offer to help clean up the problem. All they need is remote access to your device, and $$$$$ (credit card number) to assist you. DON’T FALL FOR IT!

There is always a worry that your device will become infected or compromised in some way. Having someone call you, with a sense of urgency, offering to fix an issue may seem like a wonderful idea. But what they are after are a few things:

  • credit card information or banking information, to pay for the “service” they are providing
  • access to your device in order to steal your personal information
  • access to your device to download malicious software, to make it do whatever they want
  • many, many other bad things

The Office of Cybersecurity has a Compromised Computer webpage with tips on what to look for if you think your device may be compromised. Don’t take the word of someone on the phone that you have never met that there is something wrong with your machine. Just like with any other social engineering attempt, verify who that person is by another means, i.e. calling the company back using a known phone number (NOT one they give you over the phone).