Thief who posed as Microsoft Technician gains remote access to online bank accounts by promising to remove viruses

Removing computer virus (illustration) 
By: Tanya Malhotra

A thief who posed as a Microsoft Technician, was arrested on a charge of computer trespass after allegedly gaining access to online bank accounts by promising to remove viruses, police in New York said.

The New York Police Department said that they have arrested 56-year-old Julian Alexander of Queens, after being accused of trying to steal $2,000 for a woman who had computer trouble.

Alexander was charged with computer trespass, first and second-degree falsifying business records, first-degree scheme to defraud, second-degree identity theft, fourth-degree attempted grand larceny and unauthorized use of a computer.

Alexander was booked into jail, and his bail was set at $100,000. If convicted, Alexander faces up to four years in prison.

According to the police investigation, Alexander called a woman and identified himself as a Microsoft Technician.

He then told the woman that there were viruses on her computer and instructed her on where to click to show there were dangerous viruses on the device.

The caller then allegedly claimed that as a representative of, he could remove the viruses for a fee of $199 and the victim agreed.

Alexander instructed the victim on how to download remote access software that would permit him to remotely access her computer.

She watched as the computer’s cursor moved around on the screen and Alexander then stated that the viruses had been removed.

The following day, Alexander called back, stating that the viruses were still on her computer and offered to refund the $199 fee.

Alexander asked to remotely access the computer. She was also told to open her online banking account, but she told the caller she did not use online banking.

Alexander assisted her with accessing her bank account online and then proceeded to make the refund.

Alexander then said that he made a mistake and deposited $2,000 into the account and requested that the victim wire the $2,000 back to

The victim did indeed see there was $2,000 more in the account as Alexander transferred the funds from the victim’s savings account into the checking account.

Investigators seized Alexander’s computer and they found 155 emails from people alleging fraud and improper use and access of their computers.