Cinnamon Trolling for Scammers Claiming They’re “Windows or Microsoft Technical Support”
On Ars Technica, Jon Brodkin wrote an article “‘Can you fix my Windows 95 computer?’: How to troll a tech support scammer”. This came to me right after yet another person called to tell me that “Microsoft Support” called them to tell them that their PC was sending “unusual traffic”.
Usually, the user is instructed to open up Windows Event Viewer to look for any errors. Frankly, it would be unusual for there to not be any errors or warnings at all. However, the scammer zeroes in on those mostly harmless log entries to try to convince the user that their PC has a “serious” infection of some type.
Of course, the victim has to pay a fee for this “service”. Once the user gives up his or her credit card information, the “technician” then takes control of the machine to “fix” the “problem”, and in some cases the “technician” gathers up as much financial and personal information they can to upload to a website somewhere.
Well, it appears that some people are now trolling the scammers. In the above link, you can read about how one person claimed to be installing a nonexistent service pack, be on CompuServe via a modem and even playing a modem sound in the background (which of course disconnects a lot).
My favorite line is: “My friends call me ‘Cinnamon.’ If you want to call me Cinnamon, that’s fine."
This is a must read, IMO.
The important thing to take away, though, is that Microsoft will not call you out of the blue for a tech support call. Or, as one commenter mentioned, “Several places around our site, we have 72pt signs saying ‘We don’t pay Microsoft enough for them to proactively call us about problems. It is a scam. Hang up or face the consequences.’”
THINK = Testing Hustlers Inhibits New Kablooeies
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