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YOU ASK. WE INVESTIGATE: Microsoft Tech Support Scam


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YOU ASK. WE INVESTIGATE: Microsoft Tech Support Scam

By Angela Monroe. CREATED Feb 6, 2014

A scam is popping back up in the valley that could ruin your computer and empty your wallet..

It's a complaint we've been hearing a lot lately, reports of so-called "tech services" calling valley residents and using the same line.
Julian wrote us, "I received a call today from a gentleman claiming to be from Microsoft Windows tech support. He stated that Microsoft Windows tech support was receiving messages from my PC that indicated an infection by a malware that had "sneaked" past my anti-malware software." 
Several other people have contacted us saying they received suspicious calls from people claiming to be Microsoft Tech Support.
This isn't a new scam; the Better Business Bureau warned people about it last year.
Owner of Desert Cow Computers, Dominique Fruchtman, is always working to protect her clients from scams.
Just this morning a client received the same type of phone call.
"They claimed to be from Microsoft, they told her that her computer was sending them supposedly Microsoft messages that her computer was infected."
Dominique says they wanted her to log onto a website and let them into her computer.
"They could have done any number of things from try to sell her fake anti-virus software to possibly infect her with a real virus," said Fruchtman.
Dominique says if someone calls you saying your computer is telling them things, don't fall for it.
"I am a Microsoft certified professional and this is why I know that Microsoft would never proactively call you and try to con you out of money like this."
Microsoft itself warns of such scams on it's website saying if someone calls you claiming to be tech support:
-Don't purchase anything
-Ask if there is a fee, if so, hang up
-Never give them control of your computer
-Take the callers information and report them
-Never provide your credit card information.
"They can scam the caller ID so that it actually shows up as something other than what it is, they can be calling from another country altogether, and pretend their calling from Texas," said Fruchtman.
Dominique says these scams tend to come in waves to areas, trying to spread infection much like a real virus.
Microsoft Safety and Security Center says some of the organizations the criminals may pretend to be from include "Windows help desk," "Windows service center," and "Microsoft tech support."