Scammers come in varieties of sheep clothing. They call impersonating Microsoft and Google, stating that there is “something wrong with your computer.” They send pop-ups to your computer stating the same. But did you know they advertise?
If you do any type of search for Microsoft, HP, Dell, Gmail, or other major computer hardware of software vendor you will see millions of results. Unfortunately many are fake support companies stating that they are “Support” for the company you called, and then proceed to login to your computer, state that your machine is “heavily infected” and require $00-$800 of work.
How do you know who is legit and who is not? The web address (domain name) that you are going to. Support.microsoft.com is legitimate, however microsoft.mysupport.com is not. The name just before .COM should always be the name of the company. If it is not chances are you are not talking with the folks you think you should be dealing with.
Below are the phone support numbers for several major hardware and software companies:
- Microsoft 1.800.642.7676
- Dell 1.800.624.9897
- HP 1.800.474.6836
- Quickbooks 1.877.797.5809
- Quicken 1.650.250.1900
- Lenovo – Will not publish a number unless you have an account, then go here: http://support.lenovo.com/us/en/contactus
- GMail – Phone support only for paid business accounts, must login to email admin console and click on Support to retrieve phone number.
- Yahoo – You’re kidding, right? Zero phone support.
Another popular place to visit for those that have fallen for fake scam support schemes is the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3). You can register a complaint here, providing all information (who called you, what their numbers were, what was done etc.) You can access that site here: https://www.ic3.gov/complaint
Lastly but perhaps the most important number to have saved in your contact list for those living in Lassen County is the Lassen County Emergency Dispatch public number. In the last two months there have been two large scale / national outages of the 911 system, affecting cell phone carriers and individuals attempting to call 911. If you are experiencing an emergency that requires 911 services and you are unable to reach them, then call this number: 530.257.6121. Again please let me stress that this is an emergency number and should only be used in such instances that require a response from Fire, EMS, or Law Enforcement.