If you receive a phone call from a security 'expert' offering to fix your PC - it's a scam.

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They've got your name from the phone book, or any one of the thousands of marketing lists on which your details probably reside. Oh, and there is a number 6: tell everyone about it.

They know nothing about your home computing set up - they're just chancers. This scam preys on people's insecurity about lack of tech knowledge.

Basically, somebody is sitting in a room calling number after number hoping to find a victim. It is very easy to be a victim, and the best defence is sharing knowledge. You need to change all the personal data that you can change.

The 'security expert' is plausible and polite, but officious.

They say that your PC or laptop has been infected with malware, and that they can help you solve the problem.

What happens now depends on the particular strain of scam with which you have been targeted.

Some crooks will ask you to give them remote access to your PC or laptop, and then use that access to get hold of your personal data.

Others get you to download a tool which they say is the "fix" for your problem, but is actually malware.

A more straightforward scam is to simply ask for money in return for a lifetime of 'protection' from the malware they pretend is on your machine.