OKLAHOMA CITY -- An Oklahoma City-area cyber security expert fights back against an international scam artist when he receives an unsolicited call from overseas.
If you've ever been on the receiving end of a scam, you can surely appreciate the way Patrick Allmond handled an unsolicited phone call he received on July 4.
Allmond streamed the entire interaction on Facebook Live.
Allmond is a social media guru, who spends his social media capital educating, informing and engaging with his audience in Oklahoma and beyond.
"Hey. If you guys are just tuning in, someone is trying to scam," Allmond told his viewers in the beginning of his Facebook Live broadcast.
The phony help desk call was from a fraudster who was trying to gain remote access to Allmond's desktop.
Since Allmond is actually a cyber security pro, he played dumb.
"Take your time," said the caller as he was attempting to walk Allmond through the steps to turn over control of his computer.
"Thank you for your patience with me," replied Allmond, who then pretended to hear a knock at his front door. "Ok. Hold on. There's somebody at the door. But don't go anywhere because I need your help," he laughed. "This is awesome."
The Oklahoma Attorney General Consumer Protection Division is very aware of scams like this and warns Oklahomans to hang up the phone if they receive a similar call.
"While the video is funny, the scam is not funny and it's harming people," said Oklahoma Attorney General Consumer Fraud Division Deputy Taylor Henderson. "If you get an urgent phone call from someone saying, 'Get on your computer, I think you have a problem.' That should be your first clue."
Typically, phone scammers work toward getting victims to sign up for expensive computer services.
They also mine for sensitive financial data on a computer that has been unlocked willingly by a victim.
There are warning signs that a calling party might be trying to take advantage of you, but they can be difficult to spot.
Calls from scammers are almost always unsolicited.
Scam calls usually originate from overseas. India is a hotbed for scammers currently, but often the calling party will have a familiar, nearby area code.
Expert also warn that no one is immune.
"The reality is it's happened to me," Henderson said. "It's happened to everyone. We all get these phone calls. It's not based on anything other than they've got your phone number and they know whoever answers this phone call probably has a computer."
Allmond kept the caller on the line for nearly 20 minutes, asking ridiculous questions and pretending to receive other calls; a stalling technique that worked well on the foreigner.
Allmond pretended to seek advice about a Microsoft software bug, even though his personal computer is a Mac.
Eventually, the caller was so frustrated with Allmond's stalling that he gave up.
"You are so dumb" said the scammer right before hanging up the line.
You can always contact the AG Consumer Protection Division for advice or to file a complaint about a scam.