For the tech savvy, it’s common knowledge that you shouldn’t give strangers access to your PC. But what if those strangers claim they are from Microsoft? According to a recent report from BBC, four individuals in the UK have now been arrested for pretending to be Microsoft support, among other companies, and scamming users.
The outfit of people would call users running Windows, gain remote access to the devices, and then spend time with the user offering “support” while installing harmful malware and convincing them that they could fix it – for a price. The report indicates that the average age of the victims were over 60 years old and would shell out £600 to have their computers fixed up. But even then, they weren’t, with another supposed “tech support” following up to offer a refund in exchange for bank information.
Two of the perpetrators were from Woking, Surrey and another two were from South Shields, Tyneside. All four were arrested by a collaboration between the City of London Police and Microsoft, who assisted cracking down on the fraudulent behavior.
“These arrests are just the beginning of our work, making the best use of specialist skills and expertise from Microsoft, local police forces and international partners to tackle a crime that often targets the most vulnerable in our society,” said Commander Dave Clark from City of London Police.
The inconvenience of being safe rather than sorry is minute compared to what scammers can do once they have your banking information. Be certain to visit Microsoft’s Safety and Security Center page for advice on how to avoid technical support scams like these.