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Five hour scam call leaves local out of pocket

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A Walkerston resident has lost significant amount of money after reportedly spending five hours on the phone with a scammer.

Queensland Police say on February 19, a pop up message on the victims computer indicated they had been charged for a purchase they didn't make with an online auction business.

The resident was provided with a phone number they could call to arrange a refund.

"A phone conversation was then held with a man claiming to be an employee from the online auction business," Queensland Police say.

"This person (the scammer) persuaded the resident to download a program that allowed for remote access to the home computer ... it was explained to the resident that this was necessary for the refund payment to occur.

"The resident witnessed remote control of the home computer take effect. They observed a refund payment take place, however the payment was apparently 10 times the size of the alleged amount entitled to."

The Walkerston resident was persuaded to travel to their local bank to withdraw the overpaid amount and deposit it into an account linked to the online auction organisation.

Queensland Police say the scammer stayed on the phone the entire time, even "providing specific instructions about what to say to staff while making each transaction".

"When the resident experienced technical difficulties on their mobile device while performing a transaction, they were encouraged by the scammer to seek assistance from other customers nearby at the time. Unfortunately, this assistance was received and the transactions took place," Police say.

"The end result of these actions was that the Walkerston resident has lost a significant amount of money from their own bank accounts, having withdrawn and transferred their own money after following instructions provided."

If you’ve been a victim of an online scam, report to ReportCyber.

If you have lost money, notify your bank immediately.

Learn more about scams at www.scamwatch.gov.au and R U In Control.

If you have information for police, contact Policelink by providing information using the online suspicious activity form 24hrs per day at www.police.qld.gov.au/reporting.

You can report information about crime anonymously to Crime Stoppers, a registered charity and community volunteer organisation, via crimestoppersqld.com.au 24hrs per day.

Quote this reference number: QI2100377944.