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Alert over fake Met fines
3:00pm Saturday 17th August 2013 in Latest News
A retired airman has raised the alert over a computer scam that accuses innocent people of serious crimes in a bid to extract money from them.
Herbert Magri-Overend, 73, of Mill Road, Melksham, was logging on last week when a notice appeared on screen claiming to be from the Metropolitan Police, accusing him of crimes including fraud and viewing child pornography.
It showed a live camera stream of him, taken via his webcam, and stated it could only be removed if he paid £100 by PayPal.
Mr Magri-Overend said: “I could not do anything. I was locked out.
“I knew straight away it was not the police. If I had done those crimes they would not be asking me for money. They would have come straight to my front door and arrested me.”
He took his computer to West Wiltshire Micros in Trowbridge, where it took two days to fix, using specialist software.
Senior engineer Adam Drury has seen a rise in the scams and is now dealing with up to five a week.
He said: “You can’t stop yourself from getting the virus. It comes in through advertisements. The only way to eradicate it is to use specialist software.”
He advises people to turn off their computer straight away and take it for repair.
A Wiltshire Police spoke-sman said: “Anyone who has been a victim of this type of fraud should report the incident to the Action Fraud team, who collate information nationally about this type of crime.”
It can be contacted via www.actionfraud.police.uk West Wiltshire Micros is offering scam victims half price virus removal, at £45.
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