I HAVE BEEN SCAMED BY A PC SUPPORT CALL
11 June, 2014 at 9:26 am in Services
Did you just get a call from a pleasant sounding person with a foreign dialect letting you know that they have detected errors on your computer? They'll even offer to show you what is wrong and 'fix' it for you.
You've just become a target and potential victim of a PC Support Scam. This scam is known by many names, It's been called the Fake Tech Support Call Scam, The Event Viewer Scam, The Ammyy Scam, and The TeamViewer Scam (the last two names denote the name of the legitimate remote connection tool used by the scammers to connect to and take control over your computer).
This scam is global and has likely bilked millions of dollars out of victims worldwide. The scam has been around for several years and doesn't appear to be losing any steam. If anything it seems to be becoming more prevalent, with new variants cropping up everyday,
How Can You Spot a PC Support Scam Attempt? Here Are Some Clues to Help You:
Clue #1: THEY called YOU
This is the biggest tip-off of the scam. Microsoft, Dell, or any other major company's tech support organization is not likely going to waste their resources to call you. If you have tech support problems, they know that you will call them. They are not going to go looking for trouble. The scammers will tell you that they are doing this is a "public service". Don't buy into this, it's complete BS.
Clue #2: The Caller ID Says MICROSOFT, TECH SUPPORT, or Something Similar and Appears to Originate From a Legitimate Number
This is another key part of the scam. What's the first thing you check when the phone rings? The caller ID information, of course. This information is what helps the scammer establish legitimacy. Your brain tells you that the caller ID info validates the claims of the caller so they must be for real, right? WRONG. The scammers are trying to build a pretext for their scam.
If someone was trying to scam you in person, they would wear a tech support badge. Spoofed caller ID information is just like putting on a fake badge, it looks legit, so many people believe it. Spoofing Caller ID info is extremely easy via Voice Over IP technology, Check out our article on Caller ID Spoofing for full details on how the process works.
Clue #3: They Have a Thick Foreign Accent But Use a Name That is Usually of Western Origin
This is one of the funniest parts of the scam for me. The scammer will usually have an extremely thick foreign accent, but will claim that their name is something decidedly western such as "Brad". If I tell them that they don't sound like a "Brad" then they will usually counter with something like "my name is so hard to pronounce that I use Brad instead to make things easier for people". Yeah, I'm sure that's the reason.
Clue #4: They Claim That Your Computer is "Sending Off Errors", "Sending Out SPAM", "Infected with a New Virus that is Undetectable by Current Scanners", or something else similar
Nobody wants to cause problems for others or get in trouble for having a computer that is doing bad things, and no one wants a virus. This part of the scam scares the user into wanting to have the scammer take action. Their purpose is to create fear in your mind that your computer is infected and is trying to do bad things to other computers.
This is the part where the scam gets dangerous. The scammers want to take control of your computer, but not for the purpose of fixing it as they claim. The scammers want to infect your computer with malware, rootkits, keyloggers, etc. In order for them to do so, they need a way in.
There are several free remote connection software packages that are completely legitimate tools designed for remote tech support. Some of the more popular ones used by the BOTH scammers & genuine support companies include Ammyy, TeamViewer, LogMeIn Rescue, and GoToMyPC.
The quickest way to get these idiots off the phone is to tell them that you don't have a computer at all.As with any scam, there will be new variants as the scam is refined, so be on the lookout for new tactics, but the basic clues above will probably remain unchanged.
Now, how do you tell a scammer apart from the Genuine Deal? Well first things first, the GENUINE DEAL will always offer you a FREE ONE TIME SERVICE. Scammers don’t want to fix anything on your computer, they want to make it more difficult for you to use your computer so that you are forced to buy one of their packages. The Genuine Deal will offer you a FREE ONE-TIME FIX, NO STRINGS ATTACHED.
Once the FREE servicing is done, you will have the option of calling the Genuine Support Company back in a couple of days to avail of a discount on the various yearly packages that they have. To try out a GENUINE PC SUPPORT COMPANY, try www.onlinetechrepairs.com or feel free to call them on 1-888-961-4986 with the DISCOUNT CODE (ID: otr214304) to avail of the FREE ONE TIME FIX.
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