Okay, so picture this: You’re minding your own business, maybe home from a long day at work, preparing food for your offspring, checking your email when you get a phone call from “Steve” who says he’s from “Windows Technical Support”. At first, you’re thrown off a bit by his very clear middle-eastern accent, but you go along with it. He tells you he was alerted by your computer that you’ve got some very serious viruses, and he’s calling to help.
Next, “Steve” walks you through pulling up your event manager in Windows. He has you read the entries you see. He says things like “Oh my” and “Oh no, that’s a bad one” in response to the events you are reading him. To be honest, in the event manager, these events do have red exclamation points and yellow error signs next to them, which can appear very scary. In reality, these are nothing more than a list of errors Windows has logged over the years. They are a part of everyday life in the computer world and are, for the most part, totally irrelevant.
The next step will involve you allowing “Steve” remote access to your computer, to help out. This is where the problems actually begin. What “Steve” will do is install ransomware on your computer, effectively locking it down. Now “Steve’s” manager, “Mike” will get on the line and let you know that since they have gone to the trouble of finding this malicious software on your machine, you are responsible to pay them, otherwise they will not release it.
DO NOT fall for this! These people are thieves, plain and simple. They prey on the ignorance of average people and steal their money. What’s worse is once they have control of your computer, they could, potentially, steal your identity or defraud you by accessing your financial information.
Microsoft will NEVER CALL YOU.
If you receive a phone call like this, call your local police department’s non-emergency number right away and report everything you can about the call.
-The Tech Wizard