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How to protect yourself from tech support scammers

Security expert Frank Abagnale shares opinions and helpful advice on how to protect yourself from tech support service scammers.



Telephone scams, e-mail scams, sweepstakes scams and tech support scams are the things that people usually fall for every day. Security expert Frank Abagnale shares opinions and helpful advice on how to protect yourself from tech support scammers.

“Microsoft did a survey, not only in the U.S. but in a number of other countries as well, which they shared with the AARP. They found that they were more than 1.5 billion dollars in losses in 2015 from tech scams. Two out of three people were victimized by this crime. What is interesting is that only 17% of the people victimized were older than 55. The people that were most likely victimized, 15% or more, were people between the ages of 18 and 34. This tells that at any age you can fall for a scam”, says the security expert Frank Abagnale who spent the last 40 years of his life dealing with crimes against governments, financial institutions, and corporations.

How is the tech support scammers working?

You either get an e-mail or a phone call from someone supposedly with Microsoft or a tech company and they claim that there is a malware on your computer and that they need to go in and fix it. A lot of times we sit in front of our computer and we are thinking that it’s not operating right or it’s running slow and say, yes, maybe that is correct. After they tell you that for a fee charged to your credit card they will go in and fix the problem, so people give them their credit card number and that is the whole scam.

However, sometimes they go in and they steal your personal information, your financial records, your photos etc. and then they want to ransom that information back to you. What we are trying to remind people is that Microsoft is not going to send you that e-mail or make that phone call, or any other legitimate tech company.

Michael Jermaine Cards is a business executive and a financial journalist, with a focus on IT, innovation and transportation, as well as crypto and AI. He writes about robotics, automation, deep learning, multimodal transit, among others. He updates his readers on the latest market developments, tech and CBD stocks, and even the commodities industry. He does management consulting parallel to his writing, and has been based in Singapore for the past 15 years.