International operation claims to have taken down Microsoft support scam.
The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced in a press conference on October 4th has claimed to have shut down a Global Microsoft Support Scam that we are all too familiar with.
A four year joint operation between the FTC, Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and the Canadian Radio-television & Telco Commission has worked together to take action against 14 companies and 17 individual suspected of taking part in the scam costing consumers in Australia, USA, Canada, UK and other English speaking countries tens of millions of dollars.
While I am partly saddened that I have to bait other scammers I am encouraged to see multi-governement operations work together to curb internet nuisances and criminals and make the landscape that much safer for everyone.
If you ever receive any calls that do not feel right, follow the advice of ACMA.
- Suspect : Always take a critical view on anything offered. Look for the catch. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
- Think : Look for the signs that you are being pressured for personal details, money or to do something then it is very likely it is a scam.
- Report : Make sure you tell your local authorities (ACMA, FTC etc.) and give as much information as possible. Try to record as much information about the scammer as possible to pass on.
- Ignore : Once reported, do not respond, bait, abuse or in any other way interact with the scammer. Simply hang up and smile to yourself as you imagine federal agencies kicking in their door in the hopefully near future when they least expect it.
If you are in Australia, you can report scams to Scamwatch on 1300795995 or online at www.scamwatch.gov.au.
Read the ACMA media release here.
Watch the FTC press conference here.
The CNet article can be found here.