Tech support scams are a profitable way for scammers to steal your money. I have been warning you about these scams for years. They come in a number of different varieties including pop up ads on your computer and telephone calls purportedly from Microsoft, Apple or Google. Recently the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that, along with the Attorneys General of Pennsylvania and Connecticut, it had filed legal action against a company, Click4Support which the FTC alleges stole more than 17 million dollars from unwary consumers by pretending that they represented Microsoft, Apple and others offering unneeded tech support services. A federal court judge has issued a preliminary injunction against Click4Support stopping their scam and freezing their assets.
Click4Support used online advertisements and popups that made them appear to be a part of Microsoft and Apple. The ads would lure unsuspecting computer users to call Click4Support and then give Click4Support remote access to the victims’ computers for purposes of identifying viruses, malware and other problems, which were always found whether or not they actually existed. Then Click4Support sold its services either on a one time basis or a long-term service plan at a cost that ranged from $69 to thousands. In return, the victims actually got nothing of value and, in some instances, their computers were harmed.
In the phone scams for tech support, it is important to remember that neither Microsoft nor Apple will ever call you about tech support so if someone represents that they are doing just that, it is a scam. Hang up the phone. Don’t trust popup ads for tech support service either. If you have any concerns about your computer’s security contact a reputable computer security company using a telephone number that you have confirmed is legitimate.