As a growing concern to users of the Windows operating system, i would like to bring to light a scam that has been misleading entirely inncocent people into thinking that their machine is at risk.

These attacks come in the form of a phone call, usually stating they are from either Microsoft or a computer support agency that claims to have found your computer to be at risk for one of the following reasons...

  • Expired warranties
  • Virus, malware, spyware or other malicious code
  • General errors and warnings

If you receive receive a phone call of this nature, hang up immediately as you could be a victim of social engineering.

Neither Microsoft nor our partners make unsolicited phone calls (also known as cold calls) to charge you for computer security or software fixes.

What do they do?

The scams generally share a common pattern which is to make you feel concerned for the security of your machine and then offer to help (for a price, of course).

Windows Run

Firstly, they ask you to open the run window and enter eventvwr which lists all of the system messages, errors and warnings from the system. They will then state that all of the warnings and errors are actually malicious and they they need taking care of, this is not the case and they are entirely normal to have.

Upon your consent, they would then direct you to download a remote access software like Team Viewer, LogMeIn or Ammyy which would give them remote access to your machine, allowing them to do any of the following...

  • Gain full control over your computer, allowing to remove personal and important system files.
  • Alter your computers settings, exposing loopholes and backdoors.
  • Install malicious software.
  • Collect sensative data.
  • Request your card or bank details online.
  • Direct you to fraudulent websites.

If you are a victim of social enginerring, feel free to share your story with the community.