Welcome to the world of Hackers!

grandpa-robberWe are all aware of the nefarious actions of a few who find pleasure in interfering with others security and communications. These spineless, low level bottom feeders are responsible for disrupting communications as well as stealing from the innocent. These worthless, insects are called hackers and identity thieves.

When sites are shut down as has been the case lately on the internet and supposedly secure sites have been violated as in the case of our government, we all shake our heads and wonder what kind of leach could do such things but when it actually happens to you, it elicits a much different emotion as in the case of my last two weeks.

Case #1

After enjoying a fun filled vacation down south, we were informed that we had made some purchases which we were not aware of. Our credit card information had been used by the desk clerk checking us into one of our hotel rooms.

Case #2

Two weeks ago one of my Blog sites was hacked into and brought down. After some wonderful help from one of our very knowledgeable sons, we were back on line in short order. Then, we were hacked again. Then back on line. Then we were brought down the third time. After careful study were back on line and seem to be more secure now. You might ask, “who would do such a despicable act? Well the answer was clear; someone from China! Why anyone in China would have any interest in a trumpet site I have no idea.

Case #3

Yesterday afternoon I was relaxing on our deck overlooking beautiful Table Rock Lake when the phone rang. I will try to repeat the conversation as accurately as I can remember.

Caller- “Hello, is this Bruce”?

Reply- Yes it is

Caller- “Good afternoon Bruce, we have noticed that you have been having issues with your computer and we are here to help you”.

Reply- Who are you?

Caller- “We are an independent computer service and offer our services free of charge to those who are having computer problems”.

By now I realized that they were out to get into my computer and wreak havoc.

Caller- “Are you at your computer at this time”?

Reply- Yes I am. (a complete falsehood)

Caller- “Bruce, look at your keyboard and what do you see in the lower, left corner of your keyboard”?

Reply- I see the Control key.

Caller- “Very good Bruce now at the same time you hold down the control key, also hold down the plus key on the far right side of your keyboard”.

Reply- OK I have them down.

Knowing that I now had a low level stooge on the other end of this conversation, I decided to see how far up the chain of idiots I could get on this beautiful day. My goal was to tie up their phone line as long as I could.

Caller- “Very good Bruce, now what do you see on your screen”?

Reply- Nothing.

Caller- “Did you hold down the Control key and at the same time hold down the plus key on the far right”?

Reply- Yes I did.

Caller- “Very good Bruce, now what do you see on your screen”?

Reply- Nothing.

Caller- “Could you hold for a second while I switch you over to my superior”?

Reply- Sure, I’ll hold.

Ten seconds later another person with a very strong Indian accent began asking the same questions and getting the same answers. And again I was transferred to a still higher level scam artist. This continued for a long time as each person on the other line tried to get the answer they were looking for but my response was always, “I don’t see anything on my screen. Finally we were up to the fifth tech and when I was asked again “What do you see on your screen”? I had an answer

Caller- “Now Bruce when you hold down both the control key and the plus key, what do you see”?

Reply- Oh now I see something. Let me look closer because the letters are so small. I can barely read it.

Caller- “Take your time Bruce and tell me what you see”.

Reply- It says……Go…….to…….—-!

Caller- “I’m sorry I didn’t understand what you said”.

Reply- It says Go to —-!

I was amazed that people in India swear and use the same four letter words we use in the United States. As I started to hang up, the cursing and shouting could be heard from two houses away. Thirty seconds later, the phone rang again and after checking the source of the call, I realized my new contact from India had more expletives to share with me.

In case anyone would like to visit with four very polite telemarketers/ computer hacking individuals from India, I have listed the call back number for you. I would suggest that you refrain from visiting with the fifth telemarketers/ computer hacking individual for he seems to be in a very bad mood for some reason.

The call back number is- Thor IA 515- 378-2001.

I would advise you not to call this number for it might connect you to a church in Iowa and the person at the other end of the line will have no idea what you are calling about. Thus is the workings of these lowlifes who prey on the innocent and contaminate the world we live in.

Have a nice day!

Bruce was a member of the faculty at the University of Northern Iowa, School of Music in Cedar Falls from 1969 until his retirement in 1999. He has performed with many well-known entertainers such as Bob Hope, Jim Nabors, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, Anita Bryant, Carman Cavalara, Victor Borgie, the Four Freshman, Blackstone the Magician, Bobby Vinton and John Davidson.