SCAM Bulletin: Fake Norton Anti-Virus Email Scam
Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Investigators are currently working a nationwide scam that is operating in our area.
Victims have received fake emails that appear to be from Norton Anti-Virus, a popular anti-virus software program. The email will say that the victim’s Norton account has been shut down or they are due a $199.00 refund. A phone number is usually provided in the email for the victim to call and get a link or a link may be listed in the email for the victim to respond to Norton.
If you call the number and/or click the link, the scammers then have access to your computer and any finance/banking information you have on file. The scammers then proceed to move money, usually $19,000 if possible, from the victim’s savings account into the victim’s checking account. When the victim sees the “refund deposit” into the checking account, they believe it came from Norton for that amount, not the $199.00 that was supposed to be deposited per the original email. Upon contacting Norton, the scammers state it was their fault, accidentally hitting the wrong keys and entered the large, incorrect refund. They will sound frantic, that they are in trouble and could lose their job, then ask the victim to at least buy gift cards, often totaling several thousand dollars to help them save their job with Norton. In one recent case, the victim bought $8000 in gift cards.
The victim does not realize the transferred money was from their savings to their checking until after they have spent part of it buying cards and later notices the money transferred from their savings was the money put into their checking, not a deposit from Norton. The victim then realizes they have spent and lost their own money.
If you receive a call you suspect is a SCAM, contact the Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office or your local law enforcement agency. You may also contact the Federal Trade Commission at www.ftc.gov/complaint.