Microsoft Support Never Calls You

Microsoft Support Never Calls You to Support their Products

If you get a call from someone with a familiar Microsoft support team accent (sounds like Apu from The Simpsons) or anyone with any accent (or not) claiming to be Microsoft Windows support, do NOT believe them and end the call. Some of these imposters will go to malicious links to sell you a service and/or software to rid your PC of non-existent malware or “fix” some trumped up problem. I had a client get a call from one of these people. Fortunately for him he ended the call before he gave the “tech” his credit card number but not before the tech established a remote connection to his laptop, set a system password (unbeknownst to my client), deleted all his documents and pictures and even de-installed Microsoft Office. Fortunately, I was able to recover the deleted files and having worked on his laptop myself months ago, when I had backed up his Windows registry or “hive” files to a special folder, I was able to replace the current ones with them to take care of the password issue and reinstall Office. Lesson learned, Microsoft NEVER calls you to support their products. Another problem people run into is when the look up Microsoft support on Google a bunch of sites with phone numbers come up and while Microsoft does have a customer service phone number, Microsoft support does not. A lot of the websites that list a phone number are neither Microsoft sites, a division of Microsoft or supported by Microsoft. Here is a tip, if the url doesn’t end in microsoft.com e.g., support.microsoft.com, it is not a Microsoft site. Furthermore, these imposters may also claim to be HP support or some other manufacturer but they all have basically the same MO, to sell you unneeded software and to get your personal information. My client was fortunate that the remote session didn’t go any further than it did and when he asked me if I had any advice, I simply told him, “Trust me and no one else”. If you get a call from one of these imposters, do not allow them to remote into your PC and end the call, but not before you jot down their number (if you have caller ID) and report them to Homeland Security. Here is a great article on these scams http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9244207/Fake_Windows_tech_support_calls_continue_to_plague_consumers

The Internet Crime Complaint Center http://www.ic3.gov is the place to submit complaints about this type of scam. They are partnered with the FBI. I spoke to the FBI who referred me to that site and they advised me that when filing a complaint, you should include the phone number the call originated at, even though that number was probably spoofed, and to provide details on what happened,  if anything.

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