There are two sophisticated scams in fairly heavy use right now and you should be aware of them so you can avoid them.
Both scams involve a very aggressive/rude person phoning you directly. They will all but refuse to be transferred to someone else or wait in any way. They are aggressive because it takes you off guard; this is a bullying tactic.
- The person claims to be from some “Service Department” and asks/insists you provide them with the model of some hardware device, typically a photocopier. They then create a fake invoice (using some official company name like Ricoh Service, which is NOT Ricoh Canada) for service or toner and mail it in. Because the details of the invoice match what your company actually has and the billing company has a similar name to what is expected, the Accounts Payable department in many companies is apt to pay it.
- The person claims to be from some large company like Google, Microsoft, or The Royal Bank and they tell you that your computer (both PC and Mac) has been flagged by their system as having a critical security issue. They demand that you go to your computer and browse to some web site. That site (or the software on that site they ask you to install manually) will try to infect your computer with various bugs, most commonly “Key Loggers”. Key loggers, log (and report) all of your keystrokes, including your card number and password for your on-line banking… not good.
If you receive these calls at work, please forward them to your IT or Accounts Payable department… do NOT provide any information.
If you receive these calls at home, ask a few questions and challenge them about being rude. In the four cases (both at home and at Arcis) I personally have dealt with in the last 2 weeks, the person slams the phone down within seconds of even basic challenges.