“Don’t worry, I’m from Tech Support…“
We have all been there. You are enjoying time with your family when your phone rings. You look at the Caller ID and while the number is familiar, it is still not someone that you know. You answer the call and immediately get “Hello, this is Mike from Tech Support” or maybe “This is John from Windows. Your computer is telling us that you have a virus“.
What do these types of calls have in common? They are trying to get you to buy into what they are selling. And what they are often selling is nothing more than vapor. It seems very plausible that Microsoft would call you when your computer has a virus. However, Microsoft does not want to deal with your virus problems. They are a software development company that just so happens to write a very popular Operating System called Windows. To clarify, Microsoft will not call you.
Microsoft will not make unsolicited phone calls about computer security or software fixes. If you receive a call like this one, it’s a scam, and all you need to do is hang up.
The scammers are trying to gain remote access to your computer. Once inside your computer, these thieves would be able to get your bank accounts, your passwords, maybe your tax return info. Anything that might be of interest or of value. So don’t give them access. Do not allow them to see your account information, your passwords, or your tax returns. I used to work in the security industry. The common phrase was that it is easier to catch a thief on your lawn than on your carpet.
So how do you fight these scammers? Simply hang up. You can engage with them and even point out that you know the real reason why they are calling, however, it would only be wasted breath. You see, once they hang up with you, their phone system will be dialing the next victim. Simply hang up. Many times this action will actually get your number removed from their auto-dialers.
So how can you get Rachel from Card-Holder Services to stop calling? You can try the National Do Not Call Registry, but that has been quite a joke in the past few years. The best tip I can give you comes straight from the Federal Trade Commission:
Just hang up. If you get an unwanted call, don’t engage the caller, don’t press any buttons (even if they promise to remove you from their list).
Hopefully you can see the theme here. Hanging up is simply the best defense against their offensive offense.