TapCold Call PC repair

I just had a “Help desk” call from a friend who relayed a phone call he had received earlier this morning. The caller knew his name and address (and obviously his phone number) and then went on to say that his PC was running slow and was having problems and they could fix it for him. To demonstrate they asked him to open Start==>Run and type “eventvwr” which would open a window, then click on “System” and he would see a lot of yellow triangle warnings and red cross errors which showed that there were problems. They then said that they could fix it remotely but the conversation never got far enough to say how as he became too suspicious.

On further questioning, during which he was passed between three different people, he discovered that the company was called SupportOnClick in India at www.supportonclick.com and could be reached at a UK number in Bradford 01274 900834. This looks like a legitimate web site for a PC support company which works in America, Britain, Australia and NZ and I suspect that the next stage of the call would be a connection via Remote Desktop and they would do something innocuous and then try to sell you a contract for three years.

I don’t suspect that this was a criminal scam, either obtaining personal bank details or infecting your PC with malware but the methods are certainly deceptive—the mechanism they used to “demonstrate” that there were problems will always show some errors. It is useful for diagnosing problems but not worrying of itself. I suspect that they are just working down an electoral roll or some other mailing list; the majority of people they call will have a PC these days. Doing a web search I find that some people are not so lenient and, as they seem to use other deceptions like passing themselves off as from Microsoft or your ISP then perhaps it is more sinister and they are trying to sell bogus AntiVirus software after all.

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