Better Business Bureau Serving Southern Arizona is warning of phone calls from scammers claiming to be with Century Link technical support, which prompt consumers to visit a website that downloads a virus onto their computers.
A Rio Rico consumer told BBB that he received a call from someone claiming to be with Century Link who told him that his anti-virus software was out of date, and directed him to a website that downloaded a virus on his computer. The next day the consumer said he received another call demanding that he pay for the “software update.”
The consumer told BBB that his caller ID showed that the calls came from a 520 phone number, but that the caller spoke with what the consumer described as a heavy foreign accent.
BBB advises that it’s common practice for scam artists to use Internet-dialers to place phone calls, enabling them to make any phone number they wish to appear on the recipient’s caller ID. This practice is commonly called “spoofing.”
The scam, referred to as a “technical support scam,” has been used in the past by scam artists claiming they were from Microsoft. BBB reminds consumers that companies will never call them at home to alert them to a virus on their computers or prompt them to upgrade their anti-virus software.
By infecting a computer with a virus, scam artists hope to extort money from their victims, and use personal information gleaned from the computer for the purpose of identity theft.
BBB offers these tips to consumers who receive suspicious tech support phone calls:
If you did allow a caller access to your computer:
For more consumer news or to find a Southern Arizona business you can trust, visit www.bbb.org/tucson.