Sharks go after surfers in Kirkintilloch – have you been bitten?

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CONSUMER watchdogs are on the scent of phone-y callers who have been plaguing computer users in Kirkintilloch.

Trading Standards officers have received dozens complaints from people who have either been caught out by a computer scam or who were suspicious enough to raise the alarm.

The scam works like this:

* The caller will state there are several faults with your computer.

* They will claim to be able to repair them.

* They will ask for information in order to get remote access to your computer.

* Once they have remote access they will search the history of your computer.

* This will enable them to obtain personal information which they can abuse.

Councillor Ashay Ghai is convener of East Dunbartonshire’s housing and community services committee.

He said: “You should never give out any personal details to anyone who has cold-called you on the telephone.

“If you are in any doubt as to the authenticity of the person on the other end of the phone ask for details of the organisation they represent, then hang up and speak to trusted friends and relatives.

“Check information on the Internet regarding the organisation. Never be afraid to hang up on anyone who has cold-called you.”

He added: “If you feel uneasy regarding the content of the conversation or you feel that the caller is not genuine, do not enter into communication with them, just hang up the phone.

“If it is a genuine offer then the caller will find an alternative way to contact you.”

If you are receiving a lot of unwanted calls, the advice from Trading Standards is that you register your number with the Telephone Preference Service. Once registered, sales and marketing calls should be significantly reduced. To register either visit www.tpsonline.org.uk or call 0845 070 0707.

You can call Trading Standards on 0141 578 8813 for further advice.

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