Microsoft Incorrect Support Warning: Alleged Microsoft technical support personnel are trying to gain access to your PC by phone or through fake PC alerts. What mesh is behind it and how you can protect yourself.

The essentials in brief:

  • Microsoft claims that it does not make unsolicited phone calls to repair damaged devices. Even on official support inquiries, assistance is provided almost exclusively by email.
  • If you have already spoken to a wrong Microsoft employee, disconnect your PC from the network and change your passwords.

Rip off on the PC by alleged Microsoft support: how do the scammers proceed?

Beware of alleged Microsoft technical support staff! Complaints about fraudsters who claim that your computer is said to be infected by viruses have been on the phone for some time. The often English or broken German speaking, wrong support staff offer to help you to clean your phone, under their guidance to perform certain steps on the PC. In addition to fake calls, fraudsters are now increasingly using emails, infected websites and pop-ups.

For example, there are more and more complaints about fake warnings on the PC in the early warning network of the market guards, which suggest that it is a security warning from Windows. You will be asked to call the alleged Microsoft support to have your computer cleaned of viruses. Alleged “Microsoft engineers” want to convince you to pay up to 400 euros for a software maintenance package against viruses and to give remote access to your computer.

The information texts often appear when surfing the Internet and block the entire screen. They are probably triggered as advertisements on websites, by code on less reputable websites or by installed apps. Ultimately, however, they are comparable to penetrative advertisements.

Tech Support Scam

But what initially sounds like good service is actually a scam called “Tech Support Scam”. Because if you install a program that allows the scammers to remotely access your computer, it can be a Trojan or other malware. This enables the wrong Microsoft employees to spy on sensitive data – such as passwords for online banking -, lock the computers and then request money to unlock the computer again.

If you give the alleged Microsoft employees remote access to your supposedly infected computer during the call, the fraudsters can also view your credit card data if they pay directly online for the additional software package.

Microsoft warns of Tech Support Scam

Microsoft itself has been warning of fraudulent use of the company name on its homepage since it became aware of the first cases of fraud and offers both tips for those affected and a form to report attempted fraud . According to their own information, a Microsoft survey in 2017 indicated that two thirds of all respondents worldwide had had experience with the scam in the past twelve months. However, since the calls often come from foreign or other non-traceable numbers, the callers are difficult to identify.

Indian call center searched in May 2016

Investigators from Germany have now acted in India against fraudulent call centers. The Lower Saxony public prosecutor’s office reports that public prosecutors and the State Criminal Police Office (LKA) have traced many calls back to the country and searched there with Indian colleagues. Seven people are now in custody and several call centers are out of order. The criminal charges in Germany since then noticeably declined. As of September 2016, investigators know of more than 7,500 victims in Germany. The dark figure probably includes “a lot of other victims”.


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