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Social Butterfly

is Alexa safe?

I tried to reconnect Alexa and I received a phone call from a man saying he was from

Alexa help.  Will he was directing me he asked for my Apple log in password and after a few minutes told me our computers had 5 foreign connection on it.  He was in my system.

Fearing a scam I hung up.  What should I do now?

 

 

 

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Regular Contributor

Also, if you are concerned about your input, just go to your device and say "Alexa/Echo delete everything I ever said." It will warn you that it may not work as fast as usual, but if this concerns you that's how you delete your history.

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I just wanted to add this. I play with these scammers ALL day long. I have a dedicated computer that runs a virtual machine (a copy of Windows that runs as a program on top of real Windows) and I allow them to connect to that, but they can not go backwards out of it and onto my real computer. I have a fake bank set up (Stevens County America Mutual - SCAM) and when they try to run the refund scam where they "refund" you $4000 instead of $400 and say you owe them 3600, I let them do whatever they want to do. My record of keeping one busy is just under 2 hours before he figured out I was pranking him. Some of the better scambaiters keep people engaged for 4-5 hours at a time. They are such disgusting, greed driven bastards that they believe anything as long as it still seems like there is money at the end of the road.

 

What they do is manipulate the HTML code that makes up the bank's web page to make it appear that they transferred money into your account. What they do is move money between your own accounts. They use various distraction and screen hiding tactics so you can't watch them, but those screen connect utilities (Team Viewer, AnyDesk, Supremo, ScreenConnect) are easy to manipulate and I know how to turn off the screen blanking. The thing is, when they do the code manipulation, all that changes is the copy of the web page that is on my screen, so even if it WAS a real bank, they have changed nothing. If I hit f5 and refresh the screen it reverts to what it was before they changed it. I do that from time to time to watch them scramble. When they figure it out they just curse at me in Hindi and hang up.

 

Now, keep in mind, I was an IT pro for 25 years before retiring. DO NOT try this at home. Just hang up when you hear the Indian accent. The latest thing is that they are recording the announcement messages from Spectrum, AT&T and such, so they sound authentic. They ask you to press 1 to speak to an agent. If you have let them get that far, as soon as they get into the conversation, just ask them "What is the address on the account" and they will hang up, because, of course, there IS no account.

 

Just be very aware that NOBODY legitimate is going to call you with any offer like this. If you think it might be real, ask for a callback number, Google that number, and see what the number shows up as. They usually use spoofed phone numbers that you can't call back. And when you ask for a callback number they usually hang up.

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Regular Contributor

That is actually 2 questions. Is ALEXA the app safe? Yep. People are going to tell you that Amazon listens to your stored messages. They do not. That would be a violation of your privacy to the highest level and invite a class action lawsuit. Your messages are stored for YOUR recall.

 

Now, what you asked about was someone CALLING you. Amazon, the IRS, SSA, Geek Squad, your utility company, "card services".... nobody will EVER call you. Nobody can see if your computer has a virus and call you to tell you about it. Nobody can give you 0% interest on your credit card. The IRS deals in written documentation only. Your social security number will never get suspended. Your utility company did NOT overcharge you and now wants to give you a refund. 

 

Most importantly, NEVER NEVER NEVER NEVER let anybody connect to your computer.

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Bronze Conversationalist

NEVER give out your Apple log in password to ANYONE!  Apple will tell you, they will NEVER ask for your password, so I don't know why someone wanted it.

I would change my password like PRONTO.  Yikes!!

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I sure hope that Alexa is safe. I've had two Echo Dots since they first came out and so far, all my experiences have been positive ones but zi understand that yours may be different.

 

I've seen and hear lots of discussion s about Amazon or "Big Brother" listening in on or spying on us through our gadgets. I did see an article fro Amazon that they do sometimes use data retrieved from ALexa commands so it seems that yes, they can listen, But in my opinion, tat doesn't mean unsafe. I'm not one to believe in a lot of conspiracy theories but I think that you did the right thing by hanging up. An Anazon Ecor or Alexa as many call it, isn't a Rolls Royce or a Bentley that you paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for so you could have technical help on stanby if you needed it. You were right in suspecting a scammer. How they knew to call you, that I can't answer without knowing more of what you were doing before you got the call. But as another poster said, yes, change your password, adjust any other settings that you can, all of that, sound advice. I'm listening to one of mine now and I love it. I trust it but there's a buttin on it that will allow you to turn it off so it's not listening. That and cutting the power will do the same thing. Have fun, enjoy your tech. I like mine very well!!



It's nice to be important but it's more important to be nice.
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Super Contributor

You're right. I don't know about Alexa. Or Cortana or half a dozen other things to help me around the house. I can adjust my thermostat on my own, thank you.
Esteemed Social Butterfly

@MartinG987436 

 

Yeah, I can still feed the fire Woodstove, or turn on oil furnace.

 

But, about the only whiz bang thing I’ve done is added a spy camera through phone to read the actual amount of oil, in the tank in basement.

 

Really hate going down to the root cellar. Cost $10 at Goodwill.

 

 Froze

And yes, after long days/nights, I'd still like to swing these hunks of glass , plastic and silicon against the nearest wall Come on retirement!
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Esteemed Social Butterfly

If you’ve given your password to another, start with changing your password.

Updating firmware for router, Alexis, and everything connected to it.

Wish ai could give an easier answer but, not happening.

 

Read this you might find something, spent 6 irretrievable hours playing with someone’s Alexa, etc month ago.

 

https://community.aarp.org/t5/Computer-Questions-Tips/Expiring-CA-Certificates-May-ream-you/m-p/2318...

 

Made ME happy my household is pretty much dumb, updated routers and only one smart CD/DVD device.

Froze

And yes, after long days/nights, I'd still like to swing these hunks of glass , plastic and silicon against the nearest wall Come on retirement!
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