AG Alan Wilson raises awareness of support scams
Attorney General Alan Wilson has joined the U.S. Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission, other regulators, and other attorneys general from across the U.S. to raise awareness of tech support scams. If you’ve been reading this column a while, you’ll notice tech support scams sound a lot like ransomware. Ransomware actually involves a virus on your computer. Ransomware locks you out of programs if you don’t remove the threat. Tech support scammers are con artists. They will call and try to convince you there’s a serious problem with your computer. On these phone calls, they’ll try to talk you into paying for tech support to fix a problem you don’t actually have. Tech support scammers also use fraudulent pop-ups. They look like real alerts from antivirus software.
Attorney General Wilson joined the initiative because, in his words: “It is important to raise awareness of these scams in order to protect the citizens of South Carolina. I am happy to join other state attorneys general in warning our people about this issue so they can protect themselves.”
How can you protect yourself from tech support scams?
Remember legitimate tech support will be something you request or seek out, they won’t call you out of the blue. Hang up.
Legitimate tech companies won’t email or text message you to say there’s a problem with your computer.
Real anti-virus programs and security pop-ups from software you have installed will not ask you to call a phone number.
The FTC released a recording of a tech support scammer speaking with one of their investigators. You can listen to it here: www.ftc.gov/news-events/audio-video/video/tech-support-scam-undercover-investigation .