Man Conned Out of Millions for ''Virus Protection''

Computer viruses are serious business. Like real viruses, infections must be dealt with quickly and thoroughly. Sadly, just like real-life healers of viruses, sometimes there are crooks out there.

Such goes the story of 58-year-old Roger C. Davidson from Mount Kisco, NY, who has been cheated out of millions after bringing his computer into a repair shop for fear that his machine had been infected with a virus.

In August 2004, he brought his computer to a shop on Main Street. There, Vickram Bedi, 36, the owner of the shop, told Davidson that he indeed had a virus. This wasn't just any computer virus – oh, no – it was a particularly vicious one that had infected all the computers in the shop.

Thankfully, Bedi's uncle was a military officer in India and was put on the mission to retrieve the source of this virus on a hard drive located in Honduras. From there, Bedi learned that the virus was linked to Polish priests who were tied to the conservative Roman Catholic organization Opus Dei. This organization had plans to harm Mr. Davidson.

Naturally, Bedi persuaded Davidson to not only pay for removal of the virus, but also for personal protection. Davidson paid Bedi's shop through credit card payments over the years, which have totaled to over $6 million.

While all of this sounds impossible and a very simple scam to steer clear of, Mr. Davidson was in no way a computer expert. His specialty is in music and he wanted to save his compositions that he stored on his computer.

Read the full story at the New York Times.

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • random_guy417
    I can understand the normal $50 or so for a fake anti-virus, but seriously, $6 million... Wouldn't you look something up or get a second opinion before spending this kind of money, even if you're not computer savvy?
  • makrish
    Oh dear...
  • 55Range
    O . o
  • snotling
    well, there ARE some stupid people out there and it is our duty to exploit them!
  • cappster
    And those are the kind of idiots that vote in our elections :-/
  • jonpaul37
    I just lost about 7 IQ points on behalf of Mr. Davidson...
  • Trashit
    snotlingwell, there ARE some stupid people out there and it is our duty to exploit them!
    That's Norton AV in a nutshell.
  • arl4nj0i
    that's some music composition huh...
  • jitpublisher
    Holy mother of.....normally I would make some comment about all the low life cheats in the world, but if you are don't even know what to call you, but it goes way beyond "stupid" to fall for this, then you are getting you just rewards.
  • liveonc
    One is born every minute. DON'T feed the Trolls! Cons can't be encouraged, but neither can "born again stupid"...