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Kirby dispatcher warns of scam calls claiming computer may be compromised

KIRBY, Texas – A man's attempt to scam someone didn't go quite as planned after he accidentally phoned the Kirby 911 dispatch center.

Kirby dispatch supervisor Samantha Centeno answered the phone on Friday and heard an automated message on the other line.

"We have been notified that there has been a security breach on your IP address," the message stated.

Centeno said she recognized the message as a tactic scammers use to steal people's personal information.

"It's not a published number. It shouldn't be in any rotation, but somehow or another we got a call on it today," Centeno said.

Centeno called the number from the automated message, hoping that the time she spent on the phone with the scammer would be time he wouldn't be able to con anyone else.

"The man tells me he was really glad I called back and he could see my IP address had expired and people from Russia were seeing all the stuff that I had in my computer," Centeno said.

The man on the other end attempted to walk Centeno through a series of steps to correct this fake issue with her computer. But Centeno had other plans.

"I probably spent 20 minutes trying to restart the computer," Centeno said.

She intentionally took up the man's time by fumbling through his instructions, until finally, the man became belligerent and started cursing.

"That's what I was waiting for, and he didn't fall for it for a long time, but my only goal was to waste his time like he wastes yours," Centeno said.

After the phone call, she took to the City of Kirby Dispatchers Facebook page warning others of the scam call.

Centeno said scammers will primarily target older individuals. She said people should never give out personal information over the phone or online.