Tech Support: Sometimes Those Geeks are Really Just Crooks
Tuesday, October 09, 2012
Remember those phony tech support calls we warned you about last year
? The good news is that the Federal Trade Commission has put a halt
to overseas telemarketers behind the calls. But unfortunately, other scammers are likely to try to use the same tricks.
Phony tech support scammers try to gain your trust by pretending to represent Microsoft or another legitimate tech company. They’ll then ask you to let them control your computer from a remote location in order to fix it. But instead they’ll leave it vulnerable to attack, or trick you into installing malware that sends the scammers your private information. They may try to get you to divulge your credit card or bank account numbers, or direct you to websites that will ask for them. They may also try to get you to buy a maintenance or warranty program that’s actually worthless.
Be skeptical if someone who claims to be “tech support” contacts you out of the blue, and don’t surrender control of your computer to them. Scare tactics and other high-pressure strategies are sure signs of a scammer. Don’t let fear of an infected computer lure you into trusting a con artist.
If you’ve been the victim of a scam, you can file a complaint
or contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division by calling 1-877-5-NO-SCAM.