Hackers claiming to be Telstra try to access computer

A COAST woman is warning residents of hackers after she received two phone calls from people asking for information, who claimed to be from Telstra.

Resident Sole Paez said she was contacted twice on Sunday.

The first caller told her the internet connection at her house was going to be "interrupted" for three months due to a technical issue.

Ms Paez said she asked the caller for a phone number so she could sort out the problem herself and then let the caller know.

"(At first) he didn't want to give me a number but eventually he did," she said.

"Of course, I didn't call that number.

"I called Telstra direct and they had no idea what it was about."

Just a few minutes later Ms Paez received another phone call from a person claiming to be Telstra staff.

This time the caller was saying there was a "serious issue" with Ms Paez's internet connection.

"(The caller) told me I needed to turn on my computer so they could guide me through to get a number they needed to fix the issue," Ms Paez said.

"I told the lady I was giving her nothing.

"I asked her for her Telstra ID number, so I could ring (the company) to verify the issue direct, and, you guessed it, she promptly hung up."

Ms Paez said both callers had foreign accents.

A number of other residents have reported receiving the same calls - with the same issue of internet connection.

Resident Chris Simpson said he received a call regarding internet connection problems at his workplace.

However when Mr Simpson told the caller he had rung a company number and not a residential number, the conversation was over fast.

Resident Beverly Barkway said she received the same call the day from a woman claiming to be 'Ellen', from Telstra.

"I asked for the job reference number from 'Ellen' which she gave me hesitantly," Ms Barkway said.

"And then I asked for her number so I could call her back. She just hung up instead."

A Telstra spokesperson said it was quite common to be contacted by legitimate company telemarketers.

"At Telstra, we often call our customers to review their accounts, inform them about new products and services, or let them know if their account is overdue.

"Unfortunately, sometimes companies call our customers claiming they're from Telstra when they're not.

"They may try to switch Telstra customers to another phone company, or in some instances attempt to obtain personal information they can use to access your money and accounts.

"These people may quote fake Telstra employee (ID) numbers or customer account numbers; or describe themselves as 'Telstra technicians'.

"We realise that sometimes it's not easy to tell a scam call from a real Telstra call."

The Telstra spokesperson provided the following information to those unsure of whether a Telstra call is legitimate or not:

What genuine Telstra callers will always do

  • If we're calling about a new offer and you are not comfortable at any stage we will respect your wishes and terminate the call.
  • We'll only call you for marketing reasons between 9am-8pm Monday to Friday, and 10am-3pm Saturday. We may call you outside these hours if you have an unpaid account.
  • If we miss you, we will wait a few hours before calling you again.

What genuine Telstra callers will never do

  • We'll never phone and ask for information like your bank or credit card details unless it relates to an existing account requiring payment.
  • We won't call you repeatedly about the same offer if you've said no.
  • We will never engage in high pressure sales tactics, create uncertainty or unnecessary dilemmas about your services or personal information.

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