A new identity theft scheme targets Netflix users, and let’s face it, that’s just about everyone these days. So the latest one is particularly important to know about — and simply knowing about this type of identity theft is your best self-defense. The scam is particularly tricky, because you may actually come across it while you think you are on the real Netflix site.
The scam even instructs you to call a phone number, where the con artists pose as Netflix tech support. Not only do they engage in identity theft, they’ll hit you up for a few hundred bucks on your credit card and steal your most sensitive documents off of your hard drive for good measure.
Here’s how it works.You enter your information into the Netflix home page, but instead of taking you to Netflix, these clever identity theft hackers redirect you to a page that tells you your account has been suspended. The reason? “Unusual activity.”
Sounds alarming, right? That’s what these sophisticated scammers are counting on, when they take you to a screen that looks like this…
As you can see, they provide an 800 number for Netflix “Member Services” and even an authentic-looking “error code.” But don’t be fooled. They’re all bogus — just a way to steal your identity details. Don’t call the number.
But let’s say you do call it. What happens? You reach a call center all right, one that sounds a lot like the tech support you’d reach if you called the real Netflix.
But these identity theft swindlers have their scheme cooked up so elaborately that they don’t just rely on people clicking on a bad link, like most “phishing” scams, they employ real human beings to talk to you — and who will try to part you from your money.
Not only that, if you give them the “error code,” what you are actually giving these bloodsuckers is a way to remotely access your computer. That, it should go without saying, is the last thing you want to grant anyone. You’re setting yourself up not merely for theft of your identity, but of most everything else you want to protect as well.
You have now allowed identity thieves into your inner sanctum. Whatever is in your computer’s memory is now theirs. Financial information, that confidential report you’re preparing for your boss, emails to your mom or even the intimate photos that no one was supposed to ever see.
Amazingly, these audacious crooks then send you a bill for “fixing” your issues. The total will be about $400. And they then ask for your credit card — and tell you to turn on your webcam an show it to them.
Now, it seems hard to believe that people actually sucker for these identity theft scams. But not everyone on line is tech savvy. Most people who subscribe to Netflix just want to watch movies and old episodes of Breaking Bad. They are not expecting to run into identity theft in the process.
This scam was uncovered by the Malwarebytes.org site. Here is a video they produced, walking you through the whole fake-Netflix identity theft operation.