Brought It In And Out

| USA | Working | January 3, 2017

(My mom is home, and the phone rings.)

Mom: “Hello?”

Scammer: “Hello!”

Mom: “Can I help you?”

Scammer: “Hello! Yes! We are calling from Microsoft! Your computer has malicious virus. Very bad! Please, we need to fix it!”

Mom: “Okay, I’ll bring it in!”

(She then hung up and went about her business.)

How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 16

| Los Angeles, CA, USA | Working | September 11, 2016

(I’d been receiving a series of scam phone calls asking for access to my infected Windows PC. I only have a Mac! One day, I finally have enough.)

Caller: “Hello, I am with Computer Security. We have detected a virus on your PC computer. Please follow my instructions so we can fix the problem.”

Me: “A virus? Oh, no! That sounds serious. Okay, what do I do?”

Caller: “Are you at your computer?”

Me: “No, let me walk over there.”

(I wait two minutes, just sitting in my chair.)

Me: “Okay, I’m at my computer.”

Caller: “Now, click on the Start Menu.”

Me: “My computer is off.”

Caller: “Turn it on, please.”

(I wait three minutes, just sitting in my chair.)

Me: “Okay, it’s on.”

Caller: “Click the Start menu.”

Me: “Start, start, start. Hmm. Looking… Looking…”

(The call goes along this way, and with each step I gradually slow down more and more. I also start to throw random nonsense words into my replies:)

Me: “I’m at the start menu. I type fluffin now?”

Caller: “I will tell you the command. Are you ready?”

Me: “Oh, type I fluffin. Barg.”

(I gradually pick up a sing-song tone until I’m sounding more like the Swedish Chef than myself.)

Me: “Floofin flargin byargin!”

(At long last, after several minutes of attempting to get me to follow his instructions, the scam caller loses his patience. I’ll never forget his parting words:)

Caller: “You are WASTING my TIME!”



How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 15

| NY, USA | Working | September 7, 2016

(I work from home when I get a phone call.)

Me: “Hello?”

Caller: *VERY thick accent* “Hi, yes, this is the American Lottery Service calling in regards to—”

Me: “Wait, wait. Who? WHO with the Lottery Service?”

Caller: “Yes, ma’am, the American—”

Me: “No, YOUR name. What is your name?”

Caller: *pause* “Uh. Rashid. I am calling with—”

Me: “Rashid, which floor are you on?”

Caller: “What?”

Me: “Which floor? I also work at the lottery service; it’s so funny you called.”

Caller: *stumbling* “Oh, you… you also work for the Lottery Service. That is good. I am calling to—”

Me: “No, Rashid. Calm down, man. You called the wrong number. We can’t win anything since we work here. You must have forgotten.”

Caller: “I.. uh… yes, ma’am, but you—”

Me: “Hey, no big deal, bud. Let me know what floor you’re on and I’ll hop up and show you how to check things against the database.”

Caller: “What?”

Me: “I’ll come up and show you. What floor?”

(He hung up.)

How To Win The War Against Telemarketers, Part 9

| USA | Working | September 6, 2015

(I’m sitting at home on my laptop when I get one of those “your windows have a virus” scam calls. I tend to be a very sarcastic person. Please note: I am female.)

Scammer: “Hello. I am calling from Microsoft. We have been informed that your Windows have a virus!”

Me: *over dramatic* “YOU MEAN MY WINDOWS HAVE EBOLA! OH, NO! What do I do?!”

Scammer: “N-no. No, ma’am, the windows on your computer.”

Me: “You mean the one that’s not on?”

Scammer: “You’re a d***!” *hangs up*

(He could’ve tried harder, but I think it was probably obvious I was just going to screw with him… Wise decision.)


The Terrible-Two Scam

, | TX, USA | Working | July 6, 2015

(I get a phone call from a private number. I answer it.)

Caller: “Hello, I am [Caller] from Windows Tech Support. I am calling about your Windows computer. Our system shows it has many viruses and I am going to help you work it out.”

Me: “Oh, no! Well, I don’t know much about computers, so I’ll put you on with my daughter. She knows way more about computers than me so she should be able to work with you.”

Caller: “Yes, that will be fine.”

(I put the phone on speaker and hand it to my daughter so I can listen in.)

Daughter: “Hello!”

Caller: “Hello, I am [Caller] from Windows Tech Support. I am calling about your Windows computer. Our system shows it has many viruses and I am going to help you work it out. Okay?”

Daughter: “Okay.”

Caller: “First I need you to click on the start button.”

Daughter: “Start button!”

Caller: “Yes, could you tell me what you see?”

Daughter: “You see?”

Caller: “Ma’am? No, I can’t see. You have to tell me.”

Daughter: “Tell me!”

Caller: “No, ma’am. You have to tell me. What is it you see on your screen?”

Daughter: “Okay, bye bye. I love you. I go on the swing now.”

(Then my very articulate two-year-old daughter hung up, handed me the phone, and went and played on her swing.)

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