All about Tech Support Scams

unpacked-logoYou hear those stories about someone calling claiming they’re from Microsoft and that they’ve “found a problem on your computer” and are here to help. To be honest, I didn’t put much faith into those stories. I mean, really? Do people actually get those calls? Well, earlier this year I was sitting in a colleague’s office, someone on our tech staff, when her cell rang and she answered it. She quickly put it on speaker so I could hear the caller. It was someone claiming to be from Microsoft wanting to help her with a problem on her computer. She let him go on for about five minutes, not actually doing anything he said to do, before hanging up. Yes folks, these calls are real. And no, they are not calling to help you.

Last week I was pointed to a great page from Mallwarebytes titled “Tech Support Scams – Help & Resource Page“. This is a great recourse you can use to familiarize yourself with these sorts of scams and to point others to in order to educate them to spot and ignore these scams.

For example:

Cold Call

Usually from India and operating out of boiler rooms, these scammers call people in the U.S, Canada, the UK, and Australia whom they find in the phone directory.

The scam is straightforward: pretend to be calling from Microsoft, gain remote control of the machine, trick the victim with fake error reports and collect the money.

If you ever get a call from a Microsoft or Windows tech support agent out of the blue, the best thing to do is simply hang up. Scammers like to use VoIP technology so their actual number and location are hidden. Their calls are almost free which is why they can do this 24/7.

…and the specific techniques they use:

The Task Manager (CPU ‘spikes’)

cpu

falseThese spikes are dangerous for your PC’s health. Just like your heart rate, they should not go up. Your PC could suffer some irreparable damage.

trueWhen your PC is active, you will see the CPU usage go up and down constantly. What would not be good is if the CPU was pegged at 100% utilization all of the time. This is not the case here.

Even if you know what you’re doing, this is a wonderful page to read and share.

Finding love on SlideShare

I wouldn’t normally post something like this but I found the use of “I found you on SlideShare” just too funny.

Nice to meet you.
My name is miss Maureen,how are you today, i just went through your profile at (slideshare.net) when i was searching for love, I have no other options than letting you Know I saw your profile, and that is why i wish to have a relationship with you, I will also like to Know you more,i will be very great full to have you as my loved one, please reply back to me through this address below for further introduction  because i am not always online, i will also send you my pictures when you contact me. I believe we can move from there to the better. But bear in mind that Love has no colors barrier, no educational back ground barrier,religious, language, nationality or distance barrier,the only important thing there is love. I will be waiting for your mail at (redacted)
Thanks for your cooperation.From miss Maureen.

If you want me to post your article, you’re going to have to try a bit harder than this…

This morning I received the following e-mail via the contact form on this site. I get these somewhat regularly but this one was a bit worse than the others. I don’t think this post will actually solve the problem, but I’m in an advice-giving mood today. 

Name: [removed]
Email: [removed]
Message: Hi,

I am curious if you are the person responsible for adding content to the following page: travelinlibrarian.info/2006/05

You’re using the contact form on travelinlibrarian.info and you’re asking if the recipient is the person responsible for a page on travelinlibrarian.info.

Next, the URL you’re asking about isn’t even a particular post or page on the site but an automatically generated page of all the blog posts from May 2006. Way to be specific.

Oh, and you’re asking about content written 6.5 years ago!

I am a contributing writer to an online project that seeks to be a comprehensive educational resource for current students, prospective students, and even parents who are interested in learning about accreditation.

Read: link-bait site. Why, because you’re not giving me any useful information like, say a URL or even the name of your “project”.

After considerable research, I have published an article that discusses the pay raise that teachers receive for obtaining a graduate degree, often referred to as the Master’s bump, and provides tips on how teachers can evaluate and select a university program. I thought this resource might be of interest to you and your readers. I’m curious if you’d like to see it? Please let me know and I’ll send it over.

You have obviously not read my blog at all. You probably came up with that particular page through some sort of keyword search in Google and then clicked “contact”. I suppose I’ve mentioned librarians in schools on and off through the years, but really, why do you think this is something that I’d post?

Thanks for your time. I hope to hear from you soon!

I hope you appreciate the time I spent on your request, in the form of this blog post which you’ll probably never see, as it is all the time you’ll be receiving from me.

[name removed] 

Michael

It seems the FBI is looking out for my wallet

Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
Anti-Terrorist and Monitory Crime Division.
Federal Bureau of Investigation.
J. Edgar. Hoover Building Washington Dc
Customers Service Hours / Monday to Saturday
Office Hours Monday to Saturday:

Attn: Beneficiary,

This is to Officially inform you that it has come to our notice and we have thoroughly Investigated with the help of our  Intelligence Monitoring Network System that you are having an illegal Transaction with Impostors claiming to be Prof. Charles C. Soludo of the Central Bank Of Nigeria, Mr. Patrick Aziza, Mr. Frank Nweke, none officials of Oceanic Bank, Zenith Banks, Kelvin Young of HSBC, Ben of FedEx, Ibrahim Sule, Larry Christopher, Dr. Usman Shamsuddeen, Puppy Scammers are impostors claiming to be the Federal Bureau Of Investigation. During our Investigation, we noticed that the reason why you have not received your payment is because you have not fulfilled your Financial Obligation given to you in respect of your Contract/Inheritance Payment.

The New American President Barack Obama have made way for all Americans who have not yet received their payment, In recent ages, The American experienced difficulties in receiving their funds because of the former USA presidents, As you know quite well that Nigeria is a black country and the Past American presidents treats the blacks in the America like slaves, The White Americans practice races against the blacks and the Nigerian Government is not happy about this and this is the main reason why your payment have been delayed with one excuse or the other, Your New President Barack Obama had a meeting with the Nigerian President some weeks ago and for the fact, Barack Obama is a black man and will stop races in America, All Americans are eligible to receive their payment now without anymore headaches. This is good news to you so act fast and receive your payment now without anymore delay.

Please I have taken this measure, having observed and known what you have suffered in your pursuit so far to claim your funds with fake banks IN AFRICA ESPECIALLY NIGERIA(CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA/ FAKE SCURITY BANK) e.t.c and I have understood that it would take a long rough journey for you to receive this funds through ATM CARD Payment, this is while we have gone this extra mile in making sure that you receive immediately your deposit through this  safe means where, there will be no trail and error or stories. Since your deposit was called back to Africa and was converted into the Ecowas treasury after arresting all the people involved in scamming you both from NIGERIA, Benin Republic and UK.

Therefore, we have contacted the Federal Ministry of Finance on your behalf and they have brought a solution to your problem by coordinating your payment in total USD$15,000.000.00 in an ATM CARD which you can use to withdraw money from any ATM MACHINE CENTER anywhere in the world with a maximum of $4000 to $5000 United States Dollars daily. You now have the lawful right to claim your fund in an ATM CARD.

Since the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is involved in this transaction, you have to be rest assured for this is 100% risk f procure your Approval Slip on your behalf which will cost you $350.00 only ree it is our duty to protect the American Citizens. All I want you to do is to contact the ATM CARD CENTER via email for their requirements to proceed and and note that your approval Slip which contains details of the agent who will process your transaction.

CONTACT INFORMATION
NAME: Chief Johnal Fred
EMAIL: chief_johnalfred77@hotmail.com

Do contact Chief Johnal Fred of the ATM CARD DEPARTMENT with your details:

FULL NAME:
HOME ADDRESS:
TELL:
CELL:
CURRENT OCCUPATION: AGE:

So your files would be updated after which he will send the payment information’s which you’ll use for the of $350.00 via Western Union Money Transfer or Money Gram Transfer effected to your designated home address without any further delay. We order you get back to this office after you have contacted the ATM SWIFT CARD CENTER and we do await your procurement of your Approval Slip after which the delivery of your ATM CARD will be in making payment response so we can move on with our Investigation and make sure your ATM SWIFT CARD gets to you.

We assure you that your parcel will arrive your country within 2 days as soon as this company receive the payment of $350 by you and the tracking number of your parcel will be sent to you via e-mail immediately so that you can track it yourself to see whether we are competent in the discharge of our duties.

Thanks and hope to read from you soon.

ROBERT S. MUELLER,
DIRECTOR
FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20535

Note: Do disregard any email you get from any impostors or offices claiming to be in possession of your ATM CARD, you are hereby advice only to be in contact with Chief Johnal Fred of the ATM CARD CENTRE who is the rightful person to deal with in regards to your ATM CARD PAYMENT and forward any emails you get from impostors to this office so we could act upon and commence investigation.

The FBI wants to help me….

…get my money from Nigeria! Check this out:

Anti-Terrorist and Monitory Crimes Division.
Federal Bureau Of Investigation.
J. Edgar. Hoover Building Washington D.C
Tel: 1-206-666-6052 or 206-350-2807
Fax: Tel: 1-206-666-6052 or 206-350-2807 

Attn: Beneficiary, 

This is to Officially Inform you that it has come to our notice and we have thoroughly Investigated by the help of our Intelligence Monitoring Network System that you are having a Legal Transaction with one Rev John Irwin of the Federal Ministry Of Finance Nigeria. During our Investigation, it came to our notice that the reason why you have not received your payment is because you have not fulfill your Financial Obligation giving to you in respect of your Contract/Inheritance Payment.

Therefore, we have contacted the Federal Ministry Of Finance on your behalf and they have brought a solution to your problem by arranging your payment in total of US$800,000.00 in an ATM CARD which you will use to withdraw money in anywhere of the world. You now have the lawful right to claim your fund in the ATM CARD by contacting the ATM CARD CENTER. 

Also, we have being informed by Rev. John Irwin that he gave you instructions on how to proceed and contact the ATM CARD CENTER for their requirements to procure your Approval Slip which contains details of your PERSONAL IDENTIFICATION NUMBER (PIN) which you would use in activating and operating your ATM CARD in any ATM Machine closer to you and note that to procure your Approval Slip it would cost you $550.00. Since the Federal Bureau of Investigation is involved in this transaction, all you did have to do is to be rest assured for this is 100% risk free so do contact the ATM CARD CENTRE so they could let you know on how to make payment for the procurement of your Approval Slip which is the only payment needed before the delivery of your ATM CARD is being effected.

Below are the contact details of the ATM CARD CENTRE which you are to proceed and contact them for their requirements to proceed and procure your Approval Slip after making payment of $550.00

CONTACT DETAILS

Name: Mr. Paul Smith

Email: pau.smithatmcard@yahoo.com

We do await your response so we can move on with our Investigation and make sure your ATM SWIFT CARD gets to you.

Thanks and hope to read from you soon.

FBI Director
Robert S. Mueller

Note: Do disregard any email you get from any imposter or office claiming to be in possesion of your ATM CARD, you are adviced only to be in contact with Mr. Paul Smith of the ATM CARD CENTRE who is the rightful person you are suppose to deal with in regards your ATM CARD PAYMENT and forward any email you get from imposters to this office so we could act upon and commence investigation.