This news item expired on Saturday, May 31, 2014 so the information below could be outdated or incorrect.
Phony help desk specialists are continuing to target North Carolina consumers. If you get a call or email from someone claiming to be from tech support, don’t give that person access to your computer.
According to reports from consumers, the phony specialists claim to be with brand name software or computer companies. Instead, they’re overseas con artists looking to steal your personal information.
They will tell you that your computer is malfunctioning or has a virus, then direct you to take a series of steps to fix the problem. Eventually, they will prompt you to download software or allow the phony specialist remote access to your computer. This will give the scammer access to all the data stored on your computer.
If you receive a call or email from someone who claims to be tech support, keep these tips in mind:
Never share personal information with someone you do not know who contacts you.
Computer and software companies do not make unsolicited calls offering tech support.
Never give someone control of your computer unless you can confirm who the person is. If you need tech support, contact the computer or software company directly.
Be suspicious of emails that are poorly written, urgent, ask you for personal information or link to a website that does not match the organization it claims to be from.
In the past, North Carolina consumers have reported a similar scam where the con artist demands money for security software.
If you have received a phony tech support email or phone call, contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division. Call 1-877-5-NO-SCAM or file a consumer complaint online at www.ncdoj.gov.