A New Twist On Tech-Support Scams

July 18, 2016


For some time, scammers have known how to trick innocent computer users into divulging sensitive information (which they can later use for malicious purposes) by calling and offering to "fix" the victim's computer. To sound convincing, these crooks make up phony reasons why the computer needs to be repaired. Now the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has been hearing reports of people getting calls from scammers claiming to be from the Global Privacy Enforcement Network (GPEN) saying that the victim's email has been hacked and is sending out fraudulent messages. The criminals further claim they must fix the problem immediately or the user will be subject to legal action. 

GPEN is a real organization that strives for cooperation in the enforcement of cross-border privacy laws. Its website has issued the following statement as part of an alert addressing this scam: "GPEN and PrivacyEnforcement.net do not contact individual consumers via phone or email." 

The alert further cautions you to not send money, give financial information, or follow instructions if contacted by someone claiming to be from the site. Here are some additional tips from the FTC: 

  • Don't give control of your computer to anyone who calls you offering to "fix" it.

  • If a caller pressures you to act immediately, hang up.

  • If you have doubts about who is contacting you or why, call the company the person is claiming to be from directly with contact information you already have.

Remember, scammers will always try, but they don't always have to succeed. Cut them off, and they won't be able to get what they're after.


©2016 Cornerstone Publishing Group Inc.

Source: A New Twist On Tech-Support Scams

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