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A man who ran a "Microsoft support scam" which fooled people into paying for unneeded antivirus software that was free has been given a suspended jail sentence, and ordered to pay thousands of pounds in compensation and fines.
Mohammed Khalid Jamil, 34, from Luton, hired people in an Indian call centre who then phoned up people in the UK, pretended to be from Microsoft, and claimed that there was a problem with the victim's computer - which they would "confirm" by getting them to look at a perfectly harmless Windows program which records machine events.
The cold-callers would then sell the victims antivirus software that was available for free from Microsoft's website, and install it using remote access to the victim's computer. U.K.: Microsoft Support Scam Leader Gets Suspended Jail Sentence [theguardian.com]
Why a suspended sentence?
Jamil was sentenced to four months in prison, suspended for 12 months, and fined £5,000. He was also ordered to pay £5,665 in compensation to his victims, and £13,929 in prosecution costs.
a ridiculous sentence, under the circumstances
I don't think any of those that are scammed know they are being fooled
The circumstances were several days of rioting, arson, looting, violence and (in at least two cases) death.
a custodial sentence was way over the top for stealing some water
He walked into a shop that was being looted, stole one bottle of water, and ran off.
The sentence was for stealing the bottle of water.
It is fraud AND hacking
@Samizdata, it does not say he way taking part in a riot. It says he did it "against a background" of rioting. Not the same thing at all.
If he had taken part in the riot he would have faced more serious charges.
your part in that.
If you want to be pedantic, he didn't actually steal the water - it never left the premises.
Looting during a riot is not treated the same as shoplifting during opening hours.
Which was what, apart from stealing the water?
It was still an opportunistic non-dwelling burglary by a young man with no previous convictions.
I used to get those calls quite often. Just to mess with them I'd order one Chicken Madras, one Chicken Tikka, 2 Keema Naans, and a couple of Poppadoms.