FTC Combats Tech Support Scams

The Federal Trade Commission cracked down on a massive international scam that tricked tens of thousands of computer users into believing their computers were riddled with malware and then paying the scammers hundreds of dollars to “fix” the problem.    

According to complaints filed by the FTC, the scammers called computer users and claimed to be affiliated with legitimate companies, including Dell, Microsoft, McAfee and Norton, and played on people’s fear of computer infections and hackers.

After getting people on the phone, the callers allegedly claimed they had detected malware that posed an imminent threat. To demonstrate the need for immediate help, the scammers directed people to a utility area of their computer and falsely claimed that it demonstrated that the computer was infected. Here’s a screenshot of what computer users saw:

Sample Windws Event Viewer

In reality, these warning messages appear on most computers and are a normal part of the computer’s operating system. They don’t mean that the computer is infected. But that didn’t stop scammers from claiming otherwise. Here’s an actual conversation between one of the scammers and an undercover FTC investigator:

Callers then directed people to a website that would allow the scammers to access the computer remotely. The scammers offered to rid the computer of malware for fees ranging from $130 to $330. The charges were for completely unnecessary repairs and warranty programs, and for software programs that are available for free.

At the request of the FTC, a U.S. District Court Judge has ordered a halt to the alleged scams pending trial, and has frozen the U.S. assets of six operations named in FTC complaints. 

Today, the FTC also released new tips for computer users to help them spot and stop tech support scams and a new video to help people protect their computers from malware:

The FTC acknowledges and appreciates the support it received from the Australian Communications Authority (ACMA), the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), and the United Kingdom’s Serious Organised Crime Agency, each of which provided invaluable assistance to the FTC. The CRTC and ACMA also brought administrative actions for violations of their Do Not Call laws.

Visit OnGuardOnline.gov to learn more about what you can do to avoid these scams and protect your computer from malware.

Blog Topics: 
Privacy & Identity

Comments

Dear Sirs, We received a call from a stange phone # 730182 Thursday, 12/13. An Indian gentleman, very difficult to understand, asked to speak to my husband. I told him he wasn't here, could I help him. He said they had identified continual reports of problems with my husbands computer and they needed to help us fix it. I was VERY suspicious and when I told him that my husband doesn't have a computer he could just say hmmmm. I told him that my computer was covered by HP security and he hung up!!! Scary stuff. Thought you may want to know.

Good Luck with the jerks,

Jane Rhoads

Obviously the "crackdown" did not work because I received FOUR (4) harassing calls in a row from these same scam artists this morning, 1/30/13.
these scammers need to be prosecuted.
I will Complain about (530)619-3038 until i get action.

Hi, the FTC will continue to investigate and bring action against scammers like this. You can file a formal complaint at www.ftc.gov/complaint. Many of these scammers are overseas, so it can be difficult to prosecute them. The FTC provides tips and advice for people so that the scammers don't get what they're after -- your money and personal information.

Just received a call with caller ID 730182. Over the last few months I have gotten others that were similar. I never answer the phone with these bonus numbers.

Just received a call (12/18, 9:45 am PST) very similar to the one lasvegasjane reported, purporting to be from phone number 530-619-3038. When I repeatedly asked for identifying information about the machine in question (ethernet hardware address, etc.), they first tried to avoid the question, then hung up. I tried returning the call (the number was on my caller ID), but got a message saying the number would not accept my call, at the customer's request (or something like that -- it was a new one on me).

Thanks for your comment, Wayfinder. These scammers often spoof caller ID numbers, so the number that appears on your caller ID is not the number the person is calling from.

soo many smammers D:

I received a call tonight from some foreign speaking guys claiming to be from Microsoft Windows. They talked of me losing my computer all together. Then they wanted me to hit the windows icon on keyboard then hit r. Then they wanted me to type in: eventvwr. I could not understand his language and asked to speak to an America but I got another guy with same accent but speech was easier to understand. I told him, no, I don't trust you. I hung up on him but I did not like the whole mess.

I experienced the same thing... They asked me to press windows button and press r at the same time.
after a while when I said I was not trusting him (He asked me to pay for a software through western union.. I told him I wouldn`t do that. He tried to convince me to complete the process by restarting my computer and see what happened. My computer was now closed and I couldnt access my computer. I made hime believe I would do as he said and he told me the password. In stead of logging in to windows I clicked "recover windows". I logged in to my other computer and found this site (google searched "microsoft scam" I read every word from top and he still told me that I should do as he said. He would close every computer of mine if I didnt. I told him he was a criminal and I wanted to see him in jail. He told me to hang up.... which I did. My computer is restored and I have erased all the softwares he tried to install. Ran a complete virus scan and reported to my internet provider. It seems everything is safe as long as I never put in credit card information or passwords or usernames.

bestove, I'm so glad you found our article and hung up on this scammer. Thanks so much for writing to let us know.

I was contacted this evening my an Indian man who idetified himself as Sam Rogers with Microsft who said they had been receiving frequent reports of events on my computer and that my certificate was expired. He said that I could turn on my computer and verify that my unique client number with Microsoft was the one he was calling about but when I said i was not about to get on my computer nor give any information about my computer to him, he said that I was using a pirated version of Windows and he could prove it and that if I didn't check my computer and compare numbers, that he would shut down my operating system immediately. I told him that if he really worked for Microsoft that when I contacted the Attorney General of Kansas and would provide them with his information: Sam Rogers, ID UD2276 and if he actually worked for Microsoft, I would sue them for false accusations about pirated computer software and the mental anguish he tried to cause me to get me to give him information he was not entitled to. The call in on my caller ID as anonymous, so I have no way to trace, although I was on the phone with him for 49 minutes. He ended the call by telling me, "You are f***** now lady!" Then he told me to f*** off twice and hung up. I had not read anything about this type of scam and feel there should be much more publicity about it. The caller yelled at me, threatened me and said not only was he going to shut down my computer, he would also press charges for using pirated software. He inew my name, address, said I had purchased my Dell computer in November of 2009 and implied I purchased a service warranty certificate. Is there any way to trace the call?

I cot a call today (12/22)from caller ID # 1-888-888-8888 and the foreign guy claimed to be from wondows tech and wanted to help me get rid of an infection on my computer by going to the start bar and clicking on "my computer". When I hung up on him he CALLED BACK and even after I told him my computer was protected he tried to tell me it was only protected against viruses not malware. UGH, creeps. I contacted microsoft to verify and they confirmed my suspicions that it was a hoax. He didn't get as far as asking me for money, but i suspect he'd rather have access to my computer to take everything at once.

On 12/22/12 Be aware calls from Andres Gustavo phone 786-259-4084, a person with indian accent called me on my first name basis and offered me to fix the Microsofoft errors that they were no longer supporting but his techniciand will. he gave me his supervisor name Bob Anderson, 347-796-4494.

I received a call like that - Indian man calling from 732-852-4679. Said he was from Windows Technical Support, and my computer had viruses. I asked if he meant Microsoft. He pretty much kept to his script, wanted me to go to my computer and type stuff in. I told him he was full of it, and not to call me. He called twice and finally gave up. Hope they close down these scammers.

Thanks for all the comments. Unfortunately, these calls are nearly impossible to trace. The callers use technology to spoof a caller ID number -- the number you see on your caller ID isn't really the number they're calling from. In fact, many of these calls are coming from outside the U.S.

I just wanted to voice the info that I obtained from the Scam from recent time. Using the Team Viewer and Microsoft as the connection on 12/23/12. Claiming being in India they ask if your Computer is working well or not. How they get your Home phone # being on the active don't call list currently they still were able to call me some how a Individual by the name of Victor Jhonson and a Id # m s 2879-038 The contact they gave for a return call if they didn't call you back first is 1-206-792-9801 so you people can research it's location and proceed and put the crooks away and restore justice. Personal use computers only play fair Yea right you low life scum bags do the same.

We got a call tonight from people claiming to be with Microsoft security. I told them my computer was fine and covered by a very good security program. They tried to argue. I also told them that the caller ID did not report a calling coming from Microsoft but rather another number (caller ID said British Virgin 284-620-3537). When I told them their calling number wasn't legitimate, they hung up.

Received a phone call from caller ID 530-619-3038 from a male claiming to be from Microsoft, the caller had a heavy Indian accent, the phone had a bad connection clicking & static. He advised me that my computer was sending frequent error reports to them which harms the harddrive and he could help me fix him. I advised him that I was busy right now and we had a bad connection. He asked me if he could call back and I hung up on him. Googled the number and found out someone was trying to scam me. Thankfully I didn't fall for it and hope nobody else does!

I have have been called six times in the last three days by these scammers. Each time pretty much the same situation (computer badly infected, going to shut down permanently, etc) They are calling my cell phone and the ID just comes up as UNKNOWN. No idea how they got my cell as it's registered on the DO NOT CALL website. Over the last year they have called about every two to three months trying the same thing. Most of the time I do answer it and just tell them I know Microsoft doesn't do this and the call is being traced....they hang up really fast then.

I received a similar phone call twice today from someone claiming to be from Windows Tech Support. He had a heavy Indian accent and gave me the same info that my computer was infected, etc. I told him I was aware that Windows would not call me directly and asked for his phone number. He gave me 980-449-3855. Please just tell them they are crooks and hang up!!!

I received the same call today as all the others and I told the guy I didn't have time to mess with him. He asked if he could call me back later. I hung up and then looked up his question on the net and found out it was a scam. He just called back and I thought I would see where he would go with this. He asked me to push the windows button and r to pull up a box. Then type in eventvwr in the box. This pulls up an event screen that he claimed was the source of all my problems. He proceeded to try to convince me how bad it was and that they were there to help. Then he wanted me to type a web address into the run box. This is where I drew the line. The address by the way was www.ammyy.com . I asked him, can we get more specific on my details and since he had my phone number and name could he let me know what he showed for my current email address. This is where he fell apart. You could tell he got uncomfortable and then he proceeded to explain how important this was to fix my problem and that I could trust him. He was not trying to hack into my system or anything. My response was who said anything about hacking all I wanted to know was what you show for my current email address. Hacking? What the… Then he put his supervisor on the line and I asked him the same question after I stalled him with small talk about the weather and such. Then the supervisor or partner in crime finally asked what is the problem? It’s simple!! Tell me what you show for my current email address. He said I will tell you in one hour and hung up. We know the phone number can be spoofed but can the web address be used to track them down?

I received this same telephone call today, from the phone number 530-619-3038. They claimed to be in Columbus, Ohio, despite the telephone area code of California. I started asking them a few questions, and they hung up on me.

I just received this same phone call. Male, heavy Indian accent, very pushy. Said my computer was sending notices to Microsoft that my computer had a terrible virus that would corrupt my computer. I asked for his phone number, and he gave 307-529-0607. Clearly won't be calling him back.

I received one of those calls tonight, claiming they were from Windows XP. I played dumb and asked for a call back #, which was 213-221-3528. Heavy middleastern accent giving the name of Sam Willsom, yeah right.
I called him back and told him he was a fraud and scam. He hung up.
Unfortunately I had fallen for this last June. The phone # then was718-310-3935...website was ITsolutionsonline.us. Now I'm dealing with ID theft. I reported it to Experian and the scary thing is the middleastern man I talked to at Experian customer care was also named SAM! I'm calling Experian to talk about this tomorrow.

I called a number I believed to be Kaspersky Technical Support to update my security software that was about to expire and got a fellow with an Indian accent (not unusual in legitimate techical support scenarios, right?) Anyway, I foolishly let them download an update from Kaspersky and am very worried about what else they might have done or personal information they might have gleaned from my computer.

The company is called EazyAid.com and I fear they are a scam. I sent an email to the support email address they provided and it came back address unknown. When I call the original number all I get is music...:(

I've taken my computer to a trusted source to have it scanned, I'm going to remove the software they installed, I've placed a fraud alert with the credit companies, and changed all my passwords and cancelled my credit card. They did get a payment from me through PayPal but if that's all that happens I consider this an expensive lesson but well learned!

PayPal actually called me with concerns when they received the transaction - they were very helpful in educating me.

But I feel frightened and foolish and way too trusting.

I, too, fell for this scam back on January 23, 2013. Same thing as everyone else, except it was a FEMALE with heavy Indian accent. I was told they were calling from Microsoft Worldwide, and that my computer had a worm or virus, and was infecting thousands of other computers. I asked where she was calling from and she just kept saying "it's about your computer, ma'am!!", "Please listen very carefully, ma'am", etc... I asked for her supervisor, and got someone named.. you guessed it, SAM!! I did as they instructed me to, also. I opened event viewer, but would not put in the 18 digit # "Sam" said to. He got very angry, and was yelling at me, telling me I was in jeopardy of the government taking my computer. For the record, I'm not computer savvy, live alone and am on disability. I told this to "Sam"/"Jerk". He insisted I had to do this NOW!!! I asked what this company's website was, and he said something, but when I went to it, it was actually JOINTME.COM (Really! Not JOINME.com, or anything else.. JOINTME?!! Also NOT THE NAME I PUT IN THE ADDRESS BAR!?)From that point forward it got even WEIRDER. He asked me to click on something, and I said I didn't see it. He pointed to it WITH MY MOUSE. He had control of MY COMPUTER. I told him that, and he said "what?". I closed the page and the event viewer, and he said "No, don't do that". I said "Don't do what?"!! He said I needed to stay on that site. I said "HOW DID YOU KNOW I CLOSED IT?!". He said "What? I didn't. I just said not to close it.". CREEPY! He then proceeded to tell me, like most others that I had to pay $$ to fix this "issue". I told him again I was on disability, and had no $$. Btw, he said it was $680.00! He said I needed to call someone and borrow it!? I said I couldn't. He kept insisting, so I just said "Well, my neighbor's not home right now. Do you want me to go to her apartment and steal the money for you?". He ACTUALLY SAID.. "Could you then western union it?"!!?. Well, anyway, I just got another call yesterday, 8-21-13, and again today, 8-22-13, from some guy basically saying the same thing, so I just said "Oh, I know about this scam already, and your being investigated right now", and he hung up ON ME! I was never able to see if he did anything to my computer back in January, due to $$ constraints, and lack of computer knowledge. I just spent like 4 days crying over it because I had just bought this computer in September, 2012, and I'm STILL paying it off!! I had NEVER had a NEW computer before this, and I'm really upset that these lowlife's are able to do this to unsuspecting people. They need to be prosecuted!! And when they are, where do I sign up for my day in court so I can get a different "new" computer?? They should have to pay for this. My computer has never been the same, and I'm still heartsick over this. I don't even want to get online ever. What a waste of something that was going to be so much fun for me. Thanks a lot you lowlife, bottom sucking pieces of s***!!

I just received a call from Microsoft 720-528-1700. It sounded like a scam because I've had such calls before but never with the actual company name on my caller ID. They wanted to fix my computer for viruses and tried to call again even after I hung up on them.

Received from Brian claiming to be "Micorsoft Windows Support" and reporting that I had malicious software on my computer. He said his phone number was 786-224-0103.

My aunt called me last night scared to death because of this same scam.

She was online and received a call from someone named "Daniel" claiming to be from Microsoft Technical support informing her of a "badly infected" computer. Foolishly, she allowed them remote access to her laptop and then told her in order to rid her computer of the "virus" (which they undoubtedly uploaded), she needed to send $175 to them via Western Union to an address in Italy. Thank you, Lord, for the angel at Western Union who told her it sounded like a scam and to ask someone she knew to assist her. That's when she called me. I'll be re-installing Windows for her this week.

I keep getting a call from this guy that claims to be from the Microsoft Tech Departmant. He tells me the same thing every time and I usually hang up on him. He called yesterday and started with the same crap, I asked his name and he said he could not give me that information. Then I asked for his number and he said he could not give me that information, seeing that it said 1-999-910-0122 on the caller ID, the same number they always call me from. I messed with him for a while and kept asking why he needed to see this, because I do all of our computer tech and we are not having any problems. He said my computer would crash if I did not do as he said. I kept him going for a little longer, by then my wife was in the background laughing and they called me a few choice word and said he would crash my computer and hung up. I contacted my phone service and they said they could not do anything about it, and that she had just had someone call in about a week ago, but they let the guy get remote access to her computer and got screwed. So I contacted Microsoft and they were even less help then the phone company. When I say that I mean the guy at Microsoft just did not give a crap. I got online and searched "how to report phone fraud." That sent me to the Federal Trade Commision, which took my info and what had happened and said they would add it to the list of reports on this same topic. That is when I found out how many people just dont know how to deal with these scams. Its sad how you see articles on this all the time, you think this wont happen to you and how many people still give over the information. Just as the lady at FTC told me, go to there site www.ftc.gov, search scam watch and they have many of the ongoing scams listed. For your own sake go take a look and be careful!!!

Been getting calls from caller ID 000-000-0000.
After several, I answered curious to find out who they were. Bill collector looking for someone but not me, they had the wrong name. I complained to them and hung up.
Someone call back and left a threatening message. I contacted Verizon, my phone company, and was told they could do nothing about it.
Can't block 000-000-0000 in my block list. Simple software change to Verizon's system

On February 11, 2013 I received a phone call from someone with a thick Indian or Pakistani accent (very difficult to understand). He claimed he was representing Windows Support and tried to pull-off the infected computer scam. When asked him how I could verify that his call was legitimate he gave me the following phone number - 315-277-2525 - and told me to call that number to verify. After a few minutes he called me back and asked if I had called that number. I told him I would verify the legitimacy another way. He then hung up and I never heard from him again. I called Microsoft and they confirmed that this was a scam and directed me to your website to report it.

I got a call this morning. The company said their name is MS Technocom. The man calling said his name is Alan Martin. He had an Arabic accent. Any of the Arabics that I know do not have such simple names. He said he was support for the windows 7 program. Without me knowing it I was getting virus's on my computer. When the call came in it said unknown name and unknown number. When I started to question him he hung up.

It sounded as if they were trying to track my phone number because the sound of dialing and on ring would follow the dial. He was talking fast with a heavy India accent saying my computer was about to shut down...which it did. I immediately shut down all update past two days ago and logged back into my system with no problem.

I received a call from some Indian man claiming to be part of Windows Service Center. He said that my computer was infected with a virus. He asked me to logon and run msconfig and look for stopped services. I asked him if he worked for Microsoft and he said no but that he fixed viruses. He asked how old my computer was. He wanted to connect remotely to my computer. In the meantime I googled Microsoft Service Center and realized it was a scam. I hung up. He called back and shouted expletives at me. I told him to put me on the do not call list and hung up again. He immediately called back with more expletives. You really have to be careful these days.

I fell for the same Microsoft Tech scam and so far they have me for $300. Called Global Connect Cloud in India. My credit card company has not been able to help me. I feel foolish2!!!

I had someone call not more than an hour ago claiming to be microsoft. The phone number that came up on the caller id was 326-172-0000. They had a heavy Indian accent and were going through steps described here. I found on google that this was not the first time that number was used to try this.

I have received about 3 calls now, first two came up as blocked numbers and the last # 530-619-3038 - "unknown name" .. The first two calls, whoever was calling didn't know my name, third call a man asked to speak with " S. Smith". Same man in the recording above. He stated he was from Microsoft and wanted me to log onto my computer. I have a Mac so i knew right away it was a scam. I kept asking him questions like, what's your name and where are you calling from and he begins to panic and speak fast. He said his name was Nick Power, calling from Delaware... CLEARLY a scam.
I played along with it for a while to see what he would ask and then hung up on him after i told him i don't have anything associated with Microsoft.

FTC Combats Tech Support Scams - REALLY?

As someone on the DO NOT CALL list, I have filed complaints with FTC for months. I still get two to three calls per day. This morning so far, two calls (and two FTC complaints) The latest is from the Security Scammers that FTC claims they have cracked down on. 530-619-3038 with ID of Colusa CA. I wish FTC would stop making claims that can't back up.

I just screw with their minds. I just keep saying, YES, NO or REPEAT while I do my normal computer stuff. Had one on for 20 minutes before he finally gave up on me (I LOVE waisting their time!!!)

March 14, 2013 - Received a call from 'Tech Support from Microsoft' it was a call from: 235-683-4810. The middle eastern accented female said Microsoft was unable to update my computer, and that is why she was calling me from Salome Inc, a partner of Microsoft.

Received a call from a man with an Indian sounding accent, named Osgood, caliming to be from the "Microsoft technology department" calling from phone # 530-619-3038. Started to read a script about a virus on my computer. Clearly a scam of some sort, so I told him he was mistaken and he hung up.

Bigger concern is that I contacted the Microsoft Answer Desk Premium Support online service (spoke to Rudolfo) the night before. Wondering if there is a connection, as I have never been contacted by MS previously. Be careful; something is not right about this caller, or the circumstances. Hope MS security is checking into their providers.

Just received a call from (530)619-3038. Knew about this malware scam [scammers called computer users and claimed to be affiliated with legitimate companies, including Dell, Microsoft, McAfee and Norton, and played on people’s fear of computer infections and hackers.] When the heck are they going to lock these idiots up.

Just received a call from an Indian man, Mr. French from 302-261-9242. Told him I would call back. Claimed to be from Microsoft.

Fear not Windows users, I to get these great calls. And I'm a 100% Mac guy. I'll burn a few more cycles with this troll for you next time he calls.

I got a phone call monday from an indian man. I could not talk, he called back two days later. He knew my first name. Said he was from Microsoft windows. I told him when he called back not to call me anymore that I knew what he was up to and after a few choice words because I was so mad, I hung up. Scary he knew my name.

My 75 year old mother in law just got one of these calls. Luckily, she referred them to me. They called, but then my mother in law called at same time. Cannot wait for these guys to call me back and I can play with their brains. Haven't decided if I will make up credit card numbers OR tell them I am with the International FBI Internet Fraud Team, how can I help them?

I got a call from an Indian man. Said he worked for "Windows Technical Support." Gave me a call back number of 347-796-4494. Told me my computer was infected and "reflecting back to the Unisys(?) server."
Told me to hit the windows-R keys, and then type in "eventvwr". I hung up at that point (and the guy called back twice). Although this page says the FTC is "cracking down" on this scam, I find similar blog posts going back to 2010!!!
Not a very good job of cracking down, right? This scammer must thing this is hilarious. I feel bad for the people who get suckered in. :(

Similar to the other posters, I received a call from 530-619-3038. The individual, who claimed to be from Microsoft, had a thick Indian accent and told me my computers were being hacked and that these events had showed up on Microsoft's servers. He had me run EventViewer (start, run, eventvwr) and wanted to walk me through the event logs to point me to various events that would indicate "hacking". They then asked me to point a browser to www.ts926.com, which I did. This is a remote technical support application. The "WHOIS" lookup for this web site is fictitious. The Administrative Contact is listed as
John, Patricia admin@ts926.com
TS926
2nd Street
New York, Ohio 56678
United States
+1.724723847

--Note the non-functional phone number.

Good luck stopping these idiots -- they chewed up a good 20 minutes of my time today.

P.S. You can reach these jokers by dialing 855-731-4936. It sounds like an international call; when they pick up they answer as "Microsoft support". Yeah, right!

I just received a call from this same phone number - 855-731-4936. The guy (who sounded Indian or Pakistani) informed me that his name was Jordan. There was background noise. It sounded like he was calling me from some sort of international call center. He said he worked for Microsoft and was at the "Windows Service Center." Uh huh. He then told me that my computer was "sending out signals" and that "this indicates that your computer has been hacked and your personal information is at risk." I knew it was a scam from the get go, but pretended to play along, just to see exactly what he wanted. He told me that he would help me "fix" my computer, and that I would have to visit a website (he never actually got around to giving me the address), and then I could download software to "clean" my computer. He wanted me to download what had to be a virus of some sort and then he wanted credit card info. I hung up.

This just happened to me. I was suspicious, since they called me and I couldn't understand them well. I got "transferred" to a supervisor who spoke better English who repeated the same thing--I had a malicious file on my computer that they found. They again said they were from the windows division of Microsoft. I said oh that's funny, my husband works for Microsoft (which he did, but no longer does). I can have him call you I said. They gave me that number above. I knew it was a phishing scam. Losers! How do we report this?

I received a call this morning from 5749055110, said was from Windows, told me totype in my computer the id # 888DCA60-FCO08-11CF-8F0F-00C04FD7D062, of course I didn´t ! i wrote it down,told me not to give that code to no one under no circumstances!!! then asked me to type eventvwr, and www.ts926.com.....ten my husband came and I just hung up, but wrote it all down to check later!

I received a call this morning from 5749055110, said was from Windows, told me totype in my computer the id # 888DCA60-FCO08-11CF-8F0F-00C04FD7D062, of course I didn´t ! i wrote it down,told me not to give that code to no one under no circumstances!!! then asked me to type eventvwr, and www.ts926.com.....then my husband came and needed to use the phone, and I just hung up, but wrote it all down to check later!

I had someone call not more than an hour ago claiming to be microsoft. The phone number that came up on the caller id was 326-172-0000. They had a heavy Indian accent and were going through steps described here. I am an electronics engineer and build all of my own PCs and know exactly what software and security programs I have on them. It is funny because I just purchased the latest version of McAfee for this computer 2 days before and had run a complete scan(Virus and Malware Free). He had hung up before I could get anymore information.

530-619-3038 is still at it. I'm a Democrat, but you guys aren't giving me confidence in government being able to protect people from fraudsters like this guy. How many complaints do you need before you do something? For every day that goes by, there's another opportunity for this guy to rip someone off or worse, cover his tracks behind him.

May 1 10:00 am: I got a call from the East Indian-Sounding fellow just a few minutes ago. He referred to me by a mangled version of my name (part my name, part my city) as if the fields in the "list" had been improperly imported.

He asked if this person (again, part my name, part my city) was there. I told him there's no one here by that name and he kinda chuckled. I hung up.

HE THEN CALLED BACK. I said, "Hello" and he said "Hello, a***ole" and HUNG UP.

*69 gave me the number and a google brought me here. I'm so dismayed that you've had MONTHS to track this guy down, he's still at it, and Americans are still being preyed upon to this day.

My wife got 2 calls from these people today. They said that they were from "Windows Technical Support" and were seeing errors on our computer. They wanted her to go into the "Event Viewer". When she asked for number she could call to verify who they were, they gave her the name Bob Anderson at 347-796-4494. They called back later from number 206-777-1016 which caller ID showed as "Seattle Washington". I told my wife to just ignore their calls.

The phone number of these individuals is 530-619-3038

I just received one of these calls from a man named "Daniel." The caller ID was scrambled, but he told me I could reach him at (480) 259-3403.

Received a call on my cell from 530-619-3038. I generally don't answer unrecognized numbers but was expecting a call and so picked up. An "Indian" gentleman on the other end of the line asked to speak to my ex, ao I was happy to tell him he'd gotten a wrong number and terminated the call. Researching caller ID (phone #) brought me here - apparently nothing is being done to pursue and prosecute these scammers if this number is still being used for the same illicit purpose today as back in January. Thanks, FTC...

Just received a similar call from Auburn, WA 253-802-0309 saying I had malicious software causing problems. He hung up when I started asking questions.

They called my business today and insisted they were from Microsoft. I told him we had a bad connection and he gave me his 800 number - 866-539-8674 LET'S ALL CALL HIS 800# ALL THE TIME! Let them PAY for trying to scam US!

Just had one of these calls from (520) 619-3038. They are still at it.

Got a call at 8:00 a.m. from a man with a heavy Indian accent. Said he was calling from Microsoft Technical Support and that our computer was sending dangerous files to Microsoft's server. Wanted me to go to my computer and download software to remove viruses. Told him I used Microsoft Essentials already. Finally I told him I wouldn't do anything but would have my son (a software architect) call them. He gave me 800-252-8154 as the number to call. That number, however, is for the State of Texas Department of Mental Health Office of Consumer Services and Rights Protection. Caller id was 326-172-0000.

Bad guys.

RULE OF THUMB, IF THEY CAN'T SPEAK ENGLISH SO YOU CAN UNDERSTAND THEM CLEARLY, HANG UP.

I just got a call #253-802-0309 a woman with an accent asked me to turn on my computer because of Malware& Virus . I pretended to go along with it but did not turn on computer . I asked her questions Name location company ect the she hung up on me .

Same woman spoke to me

I have been getting the same calls with the caller ID as "Unavailable" Same dialog that all of your comments refer to. Only difference I can see is that the phone number was: 801-385-7594.

I'm worried they can gain excess to my computer through my phone line is this possible ??

Got the same caller today. Indian or Pakistani guy knew our names which freaked out my wife. He said he was from tech support firm representing Microsoft and was insistent that we sit at our machines.
My wife isn't that computer literate but I am and smelled a rat.
When I began to question him he hung up.
I called back the phone number on my caller ID (530-619-3038)in Calif. and got the same message that the people above got. " Number no longer in service at a the customers request".
Talk about blatant.
Next I called the 855 number listed above and it was a foreign ring and the guy that answered said "Microsoft Service Center" When I told him I forwarded this all the FBI he told me..."Fark off"...lol.
These guys aren't even good!

At 9:20 P.M. we received a call from 326-172-0000. A woman with an obvious foreign, hard-to-understand accent warned me that my computer was currently being bombarded by malware. She also said I needed to get to my computer so that a specialist could help me "fix the problem." Without responding to her, I simply went to my computer, turned it off for the night, and went to bed. The late night call was a dead giveaway!

Just got the same kind of call from 212-418-9918 saying they were tech support for Windows 7 and they had reports that my computer was crashing. I told them I had no evidence of that and that my computer was highly protected by a trusted technician. I then asked for their name, where they were calling from and phone number. Gave it to me but were quickly becoming hostile. I asked them where they got my name and number and told me that they had it because I registered my Windows 7. I said I would have my person look at it and take care of any problems...and Good bye. All I can say is that they must be making the dollars from somebody to keep this up...but it isn't going to be me! Stay safe everyone.

We just got one of these calls. Said his name was Albert June. Gave me this number to verify he was legit. 213-761-8498. Smelled the scam before he even brought it on. What an idiot.

Just got call from 326-172-0000. Just like described above, heavy Indian acceint, first claiming to have received word of my computer being infected by malware from an unintelligible monitoring program. I kept him/her talking and he/she later claimed to be with Microsoft in London. I told him/her I'd check with Microsoft directly. The caller persisted, so I asked what he/she exactly wanted me to do. I then stated that if it involved going to a certain URL or changing a setting, it wasn't going to happen. At that point, he/she hung up. I had kept him/her on the line for 3 minutes 54 seconds.

Received a call today from "Out of Area" and got this same shpiel about working for Windows and helping me by showing me all the viruses on my system with eventvwr. Instead of typing it into the "run" command line, I googled it and found a Microsoft support forum IDing it as a scam (I'd figured as much but wanted to get enough info to prove it). Before I hung up, I asked for information about his business, and he said he worked for iFix and gave me the following information: Angel Wilson, employee no. 895623, phone no. 972-591-8270, email support@ifix-web.com, website www.ifix-web.com, located in McKinney, TX. The website includes all of the information (although I didn't call to see if he worked there), and appears to sell tech support services. I filed a complaint, since I'm on the DNC registry. Hopefully he won't call back.

Ive received a similar call from an Indian fellow, but today's call came from New York 718-205-0445 an Asian fellow this time. I made it to the point of running event viewer and started saying I didn't trust his authenticity. Then he got angry and said he was calling as a contractor for Microsoft support on behalf of my computer owned by & used the name of a business partner associated with my telephone number. Never mind this is a residential line and that person lives in another state. Then I got angry and asked for his supervisor. He threatened to report me as harassing him and I discussed what harassment was and that I'd be reporting to the authorities. Then he quizzed me on my age, told me my voice was sexy (wth?) and after telling him that was inappropriate and he threatened to call me everyday (into perpetuity?) until I calmed down, continued to ask him to take me off his call list & he finally agreed and hung up. Thankfully wasted 18 minutes of his time & mine - and now after reading all of these posts & writing my own, wasted over an hour of nap time. Time to cook dinner. God bless America! Hopefully someone can put a stop to this nonsense!

I received 2 calls a few weeks apart. Last one on 7-9-13. A person with heavy Indian accent tells me my Windows 8 has expired and will no longer receive support. I need their assistance. Bothe time I told them I was busy and asked for a phone #. First time they would not give it to me, last time they gave me 347 796 4494. I said I would call back, he gave me his name as 'Mr. Brown'. I gave him my name as Ms. Jones, even though he addressed me by my last name. I did not return the call, as I assume it was a scam.

Okay, I have gotten these calls for FIVE years now, and I am so sick of them. It's always the same: (insert thick accent, probably Indian) There's something wrong with your computer, then they want you to turn on your computer and we all know where that goes. Lately they have been claiming to be Microsoft technical support. Last weeks call I answered and I actually got a guy that let me talk to him about how sick I was with them calling me and I asked them to please stop that I wasn't stupid enough to fall for this on call one let alone call 201 which is literally about how many I have gotten. He then proceeded to call me stupid, and threatened to call the FBI on me. I then asked to speak to his manager, which he allowed! Then I got an even less articulate Indian fellow who did his utmost to not let me talk at all, and to claim that since they didn't ask for my credit card numbers or other personal information that they were legit. I told him they were scammers and that I don't want to be called any more, that it would be better for both of us. He then proceeded to state that "You're mad," and I thought, yeah, and said "wouldn't you be if you have been getting people trying to steal from you for years." He then proceeded to hang up. So today, I just got another phone call from them! The chaps name was Eric (LOL). I guess asking doesn't do much good (Big surprise) I just don't want to get these phone calls for another 5 YEARS. I have really had my fill. There needs to be some way to crack down on these people it's getting ridiculous. Also now I have a Free Medical Alert or something Robocalling me telling me I will get their alert system free (just press 1). Pretty much every 4 phone calls I answer any more is a scam, a survey, or some other stranger that just wants something from me, and that's with being on the Do Not Call list. They must just really like my number. What kind of people are out there in this world? It makes me sick, all these people that prey on others, maybe they were never hugged as children. Who knows. Anyways, if you get a call too, pray that you are luckier then me and do not get them for 5 more years! :(

FTC: Please do a better job "combatting" this scam because I am still getting these calls from "Windows Tech Support". It's exactly as everyone else has posted - A very OBVIOUSLY middle eastern man with a name like "Dave" or "Mike" calls and tries to get me to believe my computer is infected. The last two times I told him that I didn't even own a computer and he hung up right away.

Furthermore, I am on the do not call list. I have registered all my numbers but still get TONS of these scam type calls from many different organizations. I feel that you guys are giving people a false sense of security by claiming to put us on "do not call lists" and "cracking down" on scams. I have not seen a difference in the amount of scam calls I get, if anything it is worse.

They are still scamming people. We just got called. The FTC needs to relook into this.

ITECHLINE just did this to me as of 6-25-2013 for $200.00 and also my son same scam. I live in MA and he lives in FL>

I am going to report this to my credit card company.

I just got a call from "windows" saying my computer has an extremely harmful bug. The caller ID was 000. Was it right for me to put my phone down the second they asked for my bank details? Can I get them in any trouble?

There have been a lot more scams lately and it gets worst by the minute. I have numbers that I have picked up and no one answers. Same number keeps calling too almost everyday.
www.auctionessistance.com

I received a call again today from 347-796-4494 and spoke to Jessica who said my computer had been sending error messages. I said I was away from my computer and asked for her name and number and told her that my husband who works for the Sheriff's Department was also having issues with his computer. She was hesitant, but gave me the info. Wish they could crack down on these scammers. I'm concerned especially for the older generation who know nothing about their computers except Facebook and email.

Same call as everyone else. Caller ID displayed number of 405-000-47553 which isn't even a valid number in the US. Had me run eventvwr to see number of errors and said my system was on the brink of crashing. Directed me to a website of www.ammyy.com; didn't feel comfortable going to an unknown website. Told him I'd have our IT guy look at computer; said he coudn't fix it the way that the Windows Technical Dept could. I asked for his callback so I could have some validity, he gave me (347) 796-4494. I never called; hence, received another call from him just now saying it was imperative that I do what he said or my computer was going to crash. He had a very strong Indian accent and his name was "Paul Miller"...ha!
I hung up the phone and said I didn't have time to be dealing with this now.

I appreciate that this article was here....just minutes ago I received a call from, believe it or not, John from techinical services. As I was doing what he asked to see what he was talking about, as I was curious, this article came up and I was stalling to quickly read through the very same dialog as I was encoutering as he was talking me into the events box and such....I told him the FTC was calling this sort of thing a scam and he got the "manager"...when I asked the manager if I could record the call as it seemed to me to be a scam (I actually wasn't recording the call as it happened to quickly for me to think fast enough) he said F*** you, I will shoot you between the eyes, you are wasting my time. TO which I said, "You don't really represent Microsoft then do you?" LOL F*** you I will shoot you between the eyes again, and then he literally started lalalalaaaalaing to avoid hearing my comments and I actually ended up hanging up. Very aggressive and crude behavior hiding behind that polite patient mannerisms...I assume this guy is not in country and could care less alluding to shooting me in the head, though that is never a pleasant thing to hear.

Same thing. Indian guy calls, gives American sounding name, says he's from Microsoft or Windows, and is getting error reports. They will stay on the phone for a long time, I figured out they're not supposed to hang up on us. I stayed on the line for a long time, saying I don't want you to SHOW me what's wrong with my computer, just TELL me. First guy ended handing the phone over to his "supervisor", who after a while became foul mouthed and insulting when he realized I would just keep him on the phone. I didn't hang up - He eventually did. Today, the call was an Indian guy claiming to be an investigator concerning the scam with guys claiming to be from Microsoft. OMG! I just said, I don't believe you. Goodbye. I hung up and blocked that number. I imaging they'll call from a different # tomorrow!

Oh, and btw, I have had to contact my security company (Norton), for several different reasons, since December, 2012. Every time these other calls have come in from those scammers habr been AFTER one of those calls to/from Norton, or AFTER Norton had taken remote control of my computer, due to problems unrelated to the scam. I know this might sound CRAZY, but I truly feel this may be being perpetrated by disgruntled, or just "shady/greedy" Norton employees!! The voice of the Norton "employee", and the "scam artist" where always eerily similar, and since Norton knows just about everything they would need to to contact me, and call me by my given name, it just seems like too much of a coincidence. Also, I hear these people that work for Norton (and other security companies, etc.), are from poor countries, and don't get paid very much, so what's to stop them from branching out on their own, and trying to scam legitimate customers out of some extra money to line their pockets? They do, after all, know all too well how insecure we ARE about our computers and being online. I mean, come on, is it that far out to think this? And the name of the Norton employees I spoke to with that same heavy, Indian accent were uncharacteristically American, like "Sam", "John" and "Mike". Hey, Norton had just had control of my computer anyhow, and had gone into my files and changed my "sharing", "permissions", and many other things they shouldn't have. I am STILL WAITING FOR A CALL BACK FROM A SUPERVISOR, promised to me back in JANUARY, and again in FEBRUARY, 2012, to resolve this issue!? It's now AUGUST, and my warranty on my computer runs out in 2 weeks. Again, I am so sick over this, and can't believe I fell for it back in January! I feel like a complete idiot! PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, GET THESE PEOPLE, as they are back at it again! Also, maybe you should check to see if there is any connection between the scammers and employees of legit security system companies?

I've gotten two of these calls. Fortunately I had heard of the scam prior to getting them. The first time they called, I told them it was a scam and that I'd report them to the authorities. The second time they called, the guy kept insisting it was a legitimate call. When I asked for his full credentials so I could verify his identity, he said he was going to give me something else (obscene language I will not repeat here). I hope the FTC is still going all out to block these unscrupulous predators.

Still going on. Number came up as Unavailable. How is the FTC going to stop a foreign company from making these types of calls? Are we even more gullible to think that criminals are going to follow a court order to cease and desist?

I received a call from (326)172-0000 on 26 Aug 2013. A man with a heavy Indian accent stated he was from a Microsoft support company, and that there were reports that my computer was infected with viruses that would shut my computer down. I hung up on him and tried to call the number back. I received a recording that the number had been disconnected.

When they called today I asked them how they had my name and number. I told him I thought he was a scam artist. I think it is good that you posted this so that people know; however, I am sure that they study websites like this as part of their scam education. (I hope that your webpage is legitimate.) Scamming-It is all behavioral engineering and a fun game to them. It often begins with a fear tactic and follows with commands (because there is a lot of research support for the foot-in- the door technique). The more commands you comply with the more likely they can succeed. They are very playful because they have significant personality dysfunction. They enjoy your anger it makes them feel important with all that attention-it is transparent that they are emotionally very needy! If you took a FMRI of their brains you would clearly see through functional patterns that something is seriously wrong. Either they were born with the defect and/or their parents were defective. Either way, the development of emotional intelligence and moral judgement is grossly delayed while sometimes they show some ability as idiot savants. Most of them were not loved by their parents and are screaming out like infants in rage. Apparently they even tantrum, they feel so lost and alone sometimes....Imagine a mentally dwarf child in a man's body. They do these things as a distraction from their inner pain. They live in fear-fear of looking at their own vulnerability because mommy and daddy did not love them.....
(My point is to tell them about themselves not us).

I got a call from these idiots tonight using the same number and he said the company was uth.com and when I checked I told him that was an insurance broker and he argued with me and said urgent technical help.com and then I knew it was a scam because I asked him 12 times who he worked for and h refused to answer me. He said he could fix my computer for 130.00 and Microsoft Security Essentials does not work because it is not licensed because it was free. They are very pushy, disconnect your computer immediately and disconnect from their control, change all passwords and run all of the scans that you possibly can. Create an administrator password so that permission has to be asked to run any new programs and make it very large and difficult and not the same password as your login password.

I fell for this one time cost me 130.00 then I got to thinking why would Microsoft be looking out for my computer? So when they call and they call often I use some of my best time consuming questions on them and the I tell them what frauds they are. Fool me once shame on you twice shame on me. They are always from another country

Well you "cracked down" all right. If that's what the government calls a "crackdown," then God help us all. Since they called me today, from this same phone number of 326-172-0000, claiming to be from Microsoft. I told the woman (who had the Indian accent) to bugger off. SO ... why don't you nail these people?