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View Full Version : Suspected Dialer problem



xineohp
01-02-2005, 09:24 AM
I have just had a shocking phone bill of over $500 and a phone call from the police saying either my computer or fax machine has been calling the emergency number repeatedly. I have ADSL connection and my computer is turned off at night. Could a dialer still be dialing when my computer is turned off?
My O/S is Windows ME

ninja
01-02-2005, 09:30 AM
Do you still have a dialup modem? Is it still connected to the phone line?

Edit: www.getfirefox.com

Edit 2:

http://www.spybot.info
http://www.lavasotusa.com
http://www.intermute.com/spysubtract/cwshredder_download.html
http://www.microsoft.com/athome/security/spyware/software/default.mspx
http://housecall.trendmicro.com
http://www.grisoft.com

Safari
01-02-2005, 09:39 AM
Don't you just love Windows and the things it can do when you are not looking.

I suggest you get expert help to get all the spyware and dialers cleaned out from your computer.

You will get suggestions from people here about various programs you can try but there is no way to be sure they have been removed and you don't want to risk getting another phone bill like that from Telecom or another call from the Police
Take it to an experienced computer technician and I suggest you unplug you computer and do not use it intil it has been fixed.

Metla
01-02-2005, 09:57 AM
>Don't you just love Windows and the things it can do when you are not looking.


By that logic if i came around,smashed the window of your car and then stole it you could gaze at the empty driveway in the morning,slowly shake your head and ponder the amazing things your car can do when your not looking.

To the origianal poster, If you click the FAQ button you will have access to a spyware faq which will give you instuctions on how to clean your machine, If you can follow it then you will have down as good a job as a paid tech, probally better then some of em.

Atreides
01-02-2005, 10:15 AM
The PC World FAQ on Spyware, Adware and Viruses:
http://pressf1.pcworld.co.nz/faq.php?faq=pressf1_faqs_security#faq_pressf1_faq_ 16

I see no reason to hire an "expert" when you already seem to know enough about computers to know about dialers... just read the FAQ and use its advice.

Also, if you have ADSL and don't use dialup, unplug the phoneline from your computer. (If it is plugged in.)

Safari
01-02-2005, 10:31 AM
>Don't you just love Windows and the things it can do when you are not looking.


By that logic if i came around,smashed the window of your car and then stole it you could gaze at the empty driveway in the morning,slowly shake your head and ponder the amazing things your car can do when your not looking.

To the origianal poster, If you click the FAQ button you will have access to a spyware faq which will give you instuctions on how to clean your machine, If you can follow it then you will have down as good a job as a paid tech, probally better then some of em.

Can't follow your logic I am afraid Metla.
Any car can be stolen but there are some systems and software that don't allow spyware and dialers to be installed that is the difference.

Even running all the available spyware removal tools you can't be sure that a dialer has been removed as some can't be removed that way and it is necessary to delete items from the registry and this requires some considerable experience.
Some of the dialers around at the moment are extremely difficult to find on the computer let alone remove.

ninja
01-02-2005, 10:46 AM
Can't follow your logic I am afraid Metla.
Any car can be stolen but there are some systems and software that don't allow spyware and dialers to be installed that is the difference.Any system can be compromised, but why bother writing dialers for a Mac? 90%+ of the PC's hitting most web-sites are running Windows, with IE.

Basic sense would be to write exploits that will affect the most passers by.

If I was creating a "tool" to rip cars off with, I wouldn't custom build one to break into a Lamborghini or an Aston Martin. I'd create something that'd break into a Honda or a Toyota as they are a helluva lot easier to find.


Even running all the available spyware removal tools you can't be sure that a dialer has been removed as some can't be removed that way and it is necessary to delete items from the registry and this requires some considerable experience.
Some of the dialers around at the moment are extremely difficult to find on the computer let alone remove.As Metla stated, all some technicians will do is run the SpyWare tools etc. I would've said most. The vast majority of people in small businesses serving computers have suprisingly little skill. I wouldn't trust most of em installing antivirus software, let alone editing the registry.

We get "technicians" calling our helpdesk for assistance setting up dialup connections, how do you expect them to be any better at getting rid of a dialer.

Atreides
01-02-2005, 10:48 AM
These fancy dialers you speak of, can they dial phone numbers over broadband? Like ADSL or Cable? I'd be inclined to think that they couldn't do anything with Cable, cos it's completely separate from the phone network, but ADSL is plugged into the same phone network right? I have Cable myself. TelstraClear Paradise 2 Mps.

I haven't experienced dialers in particular. I have Spybot S&D, Ad-aware SE, ZoneAlarm, and Norton SystemWorks 2004.

ninja
01-02-2005, 10:57 AM
These fancy dialers you speak of, can they dial phone numbers over broadband?Nope. ADSL modems don't dial, they just talk on a higher frequency over the existing copper, outside the voice spectrum (ish).

There is no way a broadband connection can put chargeable phone calls on your account, unless you've got a dialup modem plugged into a phone line the computer can't do anything like that (except maybe invoke a bluetooth/wireless enabled cellphone and make calls that way but thats prety far fetched)

bartsdadhomer
01-02-2005, 11:07 AM
So what exactly was the $500 for?

Safari
01-02-2005, 11:58 AM
As Metla stated, all some technicians will do is run the SpyWare tools etc. I would've said most. The vast majority of people in small businesses serving computers have suprisingly little skill. I wouldn't trust most of em installing antivirus software, let alone editing the registry.


So how would you suggest they ensure they do not get another $500 phone bill or another call from the police.
Running spyware tools is not sufficient to ensure it does not happen again.

A good technician has the means to check what or how something is trying to connect and has a much better chance of fixing the problem considering that spyware tools may not remove the dialer.

You trust a mechanic to fix your car, have some faith in experienced and trained computer technicians. I am not talking about taking it to an assistant in a shop, there are reliable people around who do it for a living, some on this forum but this type of problem needs a hands on approach due to the consequences if it is not fixed quickly and permanently.

ninja
01-02-2005, 12:01 PM
but this type of problem needs a hands on approach due to the consequences if it is not fixed quickly and permanently.Others will disagree with you, just like I do now. That is the nature of free speech. :rolleyes:

Murray P
01-02-2005, 12:14 PM
If it's a dialer and as stated earlier, there's a modem in that PC that needs to be disconnected. The Police suggesting your attempting to connect to them with a modem of some type is a bit of a giveway (it must be said, it's a pretty crappy dialler).

If there's no modem, in no particular order, other possibilities are:

Excess data charges, ie, going over your data cap by a wide margin either due to legit usage or being hacked (spam bot).

You provider has made a billing error.

You've being using your mobile device to connect to the net.

Somebody who doesn't like you or has a warped sense of humour has rigged your PC to dial the Police line and a/some 0900 numbers, still requires a modem though. Do you have telephony enabled?

pheonix
01-02-2005, 03:07 PM
Murray P is quite right, basically, if you are on ADSL (which cannot dial ) , then how is it happening. The only possibility is that you still have a "Dialup" modem in/on your computer, and it is still connected to a telephone socket.

If this is the case, just unplug the lead from the modem or telephone wall socket.
If this is not the case, then you may have to talk to Telecom about the possibility of a fault.

PaulD
01-02-2005, 03:27 PM
At $6 per false 111 call after the 1st, it would be interesting to know how long it was going on before Telecom brought it to your attention. On the other hand if they get $6 a shot to ignore a dialler maybe they don't care to act on these things too urgently.

Atreides
02-02-2005, 08:16 AM
You can call Telecom and have them block 0900 numbers from being dialled by you, but it has a monthly charge, and won't stop your modem from dialling overseas numbers or charge numbers with prefixes other than 0900. Bit of a ripoff. Stupid Telecom. Unbundle the local loop!

PaulD
02-02-2005, 08:46 AM
0900 call blocking does NOT have a monthly charge. See here (http://www.telecom.co.nz/content/0,3900,20849-202111,00.html)

bartsdadhomer
02-02-2005, 09:06 AM
xineohp how about getting back to us & let us know what's happening & if it's been resolved or not

Atreides
02-02-2005, 09:33 AM
Ah, my bad PaulD. I read that it did cost something... in PC World a few months ago, I think. Maybe that was for blocking toll calls.

ninja
02-02-2005, 09:40 AM
Ah, my bad PaulD. I read that it did cost something... in PC World a few months ago, I think.Toll bars do, for international/national tolls.

FoxyMX
02-02-2005, 11:26 AM
Ah, my bad PaulD. I read that it did cost something... in PC World a few months ago, I think. Maybe that was for blocking toll calls.
If I remember correctly you can block all toll calls outgoing from your phone for free but if you want to use the service whereby a password/PIN number can be used by designated people to phone toll numbers then there is a monthly fee. That's what we were told by Telecom a few weeks ago anyway.

gibler
03-02-2005, 12:06 AM
Telecom will charge you $3.95 per month for call track. That is one way of stopping the dialers. Personally, I'd just use Firefox.

Or try something like this: DialerSpy

http://www.tucows.com/preview/329276.html