photo credit: Wade Rockett
The comments on our old Windows Support Scam post continue to mount up as more and more people get caught out by these scam phone calls.
It has been such a problem that Microsoft themselves now have a page on their website offering tips on avoiding getting caught out by the scam. They’ve also recently surveyed 7,000 people, finding that 16% had received these calls, with 3% falling for the scam.
Whilst Microsoft confirm that on the odd occasion they may make phone calls to customers, they will never charge for services:
There are some cases where Microsoft will work with your Internet service provider and call you to fix a malware-infected computer—such as during the recent cleanup effort begun in our botnet takedown actions. These calls will be made by someone with whom you can verify you already are a customer. You will never receive a legitimate call from Microsoft or our partners to charge you for computer fixes.
If they do ever call you, they’re unlikely to ask for your computer username and password.
As you can see in the comments on the original post, the scam is not confined to the UK, takes several forms and comes in a variety of guises, with the criminals claiming to be from many different companies:
- Windows Helpdesk
- Windows Service Center
- Microsoft Tech Support
- Microsoft Support
- Windows Technical Department Support Group
- Microsoft Research and Development Team (Microsoft R & D Team)
- Warning: Amazon Prime Renewal Phone Call Scam (July 27, 2020)
- Most Common Online Scams To Be Cautious Of (May 10, 2018)
- One In Four Brits Have Fallen Victim To A Scam: Watch A Scammer In Action (November 30, 2016)
- Avoid This Amazon Scam (January 18, 2017)
- Unshackled.com: Antidote To Rip-Off Mobile Phone Contracts? (June 29, 2016)