Apple scammers target Madison man who doesn't give in - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Apple scammers target Madison man who doesn't give in

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MADISON (WKOW) -- It's a scam that's going around southern Wisconsin and it's even promoted one local police department to issue a warning. It's the so-called iCloud scam alert and a few people in our area have received the calls. 

When Jim, who didn't want to use his last name, got the call in east Madison on Sunday, he knew something was off then the caller started his pitch. 

"This is a call from Apple and if you have Apple devices, there's a security breach from overseas and we would like for you to go to your computer immediately and we'll give you further instructions," he said as he recalled what the caller told him. 

The caller, who claimed to work for Apple, notified Jim that his iCloud had been broken into. But Jim definitely knew it was a scam when the so-called Apple number kept calling back. 

"They called eight times in about a five hour period," said Jim. 

Marketing and social media professor Steve Noll says it's a known scam as thieves try to get your most personal information and memories.

"It could be photos, it could be financial info, it could be all of the apps that you use, it could be anything that you have backed up to the cloud," he said. 

All the hackers would need are your username or email address and your password. 

"A lot of these robocalls will be like 'your account has already been hacked, you have to act now to prevent more from being stolen' so they purposefully use these kinds of emotional words to get you riled up because when you are emotional you're not thinking clearly, you won't think rationally  and that's when you're more apt to have something compromised," said Noll. 

The call Jim received was even from an Apple number. He called the number back and got a hold of the company. An automated message notified him they knew about he hack and warned people not to give their private information. 

After getting annoyed with all the scam calls, Jim finally cut the scammer off. 

"I told them in so many words, to go to hell. And they abruptly hung up," he said. 

Still, he and Noll have a warning for others out there. 

"Anything that makes you emotional you should take a second to think about it first and certainly don't react out of haste," said Noll. 

Middleton's police department also sent out a warning to the community saying in part, "always verify the caller's identity before you provide any personal information. If you get an unsolicited call from someone claiming to be from apple, hang up and contact us directly."

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