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Is that call from Microsoft a scam?

Is that call from Microsoft a scam?

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A reader writes:

I received a call from someone who claimed that my computer had been identified by Microsoft as vulnerable. I thought it sounded fake, and I told them that I had no way to know if they were who they said they were. Then they said they could prove that they were from Microsoft by giving me my serial number if I would go to a website called www.ammyy.com.

Is this call a scam?

Yes. This is a scam. This is not a legitimate call from Microsoft. Neither Microsoft nor our partners make unsolicited phone calls (also known as cold calls) about your 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.

Cybercriminals often use publicly available phone directories, so they might know your name and other personal information when they call you. They might even guess what operating system you're using. It’s still a scam.

Don’t let scammers encourage you to install dangerous software

Once cybercriminals gain your trust, they might ask for your user name and password or ask you to go to a legitimate website (such as www.ammyy.com) to install software that will let them access your computer to fix it. Once you do this, your computer and your personal information are vulnerable.

Do not trust unsolicited calls. Do not provide any personal information.

Although law enforcement can trace phone numbers, perpetrators often use pay phones, disposable cellular phones, or stolen cellular phone numbers. It's better to avoid being conned rather than try to repair the damage afterwards.

For more information, see Avoid tech support phone scams.

I think I might have already fallen for this scam

If you think you might be a victim of fraud, you can report it. For more information, see What to do if you think you have been a victim of a scam.

Comments
  • I got a call for MS for having my account being temporary blocked. My account is temporary blocked and I can not get into this. The person said they were from MS and need to install Silver and Bing before my account gets unblocked.

    I never user Silver or Bing so I said no and hang up.

    Was this a call real from MS or was it a fake?

    How can unlock my temporary block? I tried the links in other article and none worked. OR should I have listed to the person that called me from MS and install silver and Bing to get my account back.

  • I've received dozens of these calls and so have people that I know. Started at least 2 years ago. You can always tell they are scammers by the fake telephone number [if you have caller ID]. I've seen numbers like V1000000000 or 000-000-0000.

    I know that they are fake but I know 2 that almost got "caught".

    But they are dumb enough to keep on calling even though you hung up on them.

  • I got a call from this number (201-604-4637) and they indicated they were from Microsoft tech department.   Said that my system was sending errors.   I gave them permission to have access to my computer (bad mistake).  When I noticed they put a password in that was questionable (SAM Lock Tool), I immediately hit control alt delete and shut down my computer.   When I rebooted it came up requesting a password that I did not know.   I did a repair on the computer and it is now working properly.   I then contacted my bank and credit card company to change numbers.

    They tried to call back numberous times.   I have now blocked their number.

    THESE PEOPLE ARE IDENTITY THIEVES.   DO NOT GIVE THEM ACCESS TO YOUR COMPUTER.

  • I too, received a call from someone that sounded either Indian or Pakistani, claiming they were from Microsoft. They told me that my computer's security license had expired and I could renew it for $180 for 2 years and $550 for life. It sounded suspicious, especially when he told me he would read my computer's serial #. It wasn't even close. I asked for written proof that he actually worked for Microsoft and he kept stalling and so I finally hung up. I'm hoping I did the right thing. One last item: I checked the caller ID on my phone and saw only "Private Caller" with no phone number. Any comments or suggestions? Thanks

  • I have received several calls from someone claiming to be a Windows Support person. He told me that my computer (WINDOWS) had been hacked an was being used for illegal use. He wanted me to go turn on my computer while he was on the phone so he could prove this, saying he would instruct me what to do. I have put him off' till I checked with Microsoft. Good thing I didn't fall for his lie.

  • I have received three phone calls in the past three days from these idiots. They are relentless.  They told me they were from Microsoft and had received indications that my computer had been receiving downloads of junk files, malicious software, etc. I asked one guy to tell me the dates this supposedly happened and he said that he needed to remotely access my computer in order to determine when these files were downloaded. I asked him how he knew these malicious files were downloaded without having a log or some other reports that showed the dates. He continued saying I would have to turn on my computer and let him have remote access and I kept hammering at him to tell me the dates. He finally became exasperated and yelled "three days ago, ok, three days ago." That's when I called him a liar and hung up.

  • Hi all, i can not access my microsoft Hotmail account, when i try to log in it asks me a question which is " did you request to change your security info" And also it says that microsoft is will send a verification to alternative email which is doesnt exist any more! Can anyone help me how to get back into my account please? Anyone who had experienced this problem before?

     

    Thank you,

    Ahmed Hassan

  • They somehow use any ph# out there I even got a call from my own home number. I have reported dozens of numbers to the FED do not call center and have blocked my limit on my phone before I found out that they use any number they want. SOMEBODY has to stop this. Many people are being ripped off daily. I get three to five a day at all hours. Please Microsoft use some of your power to go after these criminals.

  • I have had 3 phone calls from fake MS Wanting a 100dollars to fix computer problems.  

  • this is a regualar thing for me i get 3 phone calls a week claiming to be from windows and have probally had over 400  of them by now.

    thay are normally either Indian or Pakistani but i have had females trying it on aswell

    i now this is a scam i was first introduced to it by my cousan 4 years ago thay was fretaning to block his computer saying that thay had track down his computer and it was coursing problems for other people and by not giving them remote access so thay could fix the problem he was violation terms of his microsoft agreement and his computer would be blocked

    so eventchally he gave them remote access to his computer then thay started changing his pay pal password and scowering his computer for bank details my cousan doesnt now any thing about computers an fourt turning of the power would stop them but when he loged back into his computer he found that the scammer still had remote access.

    its the things thay can do behind the seens that is the scary thing like  (viruses and trojans)

    aslo any repitible company would'nt hang up when you start questioning there credeshalls

    and im shore microsoft and their parnters wouldnt use (caller with held their number)

    (microsoft wouldnt contact you they will wait for you to contact them)

    every time micro soft have contacted me in the past its been frow window live and their you can see who you are talking to you you have a case number and have their microsoft id number

    this must be a very successfull scam as it seams to be one that nether goe's away

  • These scams are not limited to the US, got several calls in the UK. Really I have some errors in the event log? - oh no should have got a Mac - lol.

    The response that appeared to cause most consternation was to politely follow the script until I got given the URL for the scammers to install their remote control software (which was getmein) then tell them "thank you for that info, I can now hack the correct site"

  • As I myself fix pcs for family and friends. I have had to totally wipe a pc one for someone who fell for this trap. I myselfhave gotten that call and I enjoy hanging up on them.

  • Well reading personal emails one showed up that said MS thought I was being hacked and I would have to re-sign in. I closed out and now can not get back in to my emails. I have also received a couple calls from someone with an eastern accent saying they can get my email back going for $199. I have not signed in or out of my email account for a long time and don't remember my password. My wife is in the same boat on this. I had a passcode sent to her account once but as soon as I entered it and went to sign back in it did the same thing all over again.

  • I received a call yesterday from someone of the Indian/Pakistani area identifying herself as microsoft support and that my computer had been a victim of a microsoft virus and she would help me correct it.  She instructed me to go to the computer and asked what icons appeared on my desktop.  She then said it did have a virus and she would correct it for me.  She said what do you see at the bottom left, to hold the microsoft button and push "r". This brought me to an address box at the bottom left side.  She wanted me to input data there; I started then stopped because I felt this would let her in my system.  I erased the letters (I hadn't completed her instructions) and told her "how do I know who you are" and asked for a number to call her back.  She said ok, I understand and gave me 888 961-4988 and told me to ask for Ashley.  I did not call back.  The address of the incoming call was V62615091500507.

  • I have the real numbers of the afgan id thievs operating out of San Jose,California they say the are Microsoft techs the main number is 408-915-5325 cell phone is 661-748-0240.they stold my id filed tax check and tried everything to get my bank but I was suspusious and changed passwords right away. I reported to dist att, BBB ohio attorney general and trade commission. these people are probally terrorist collecting money I know they have been operating over a year in San Jose I cant get out there or I would track them down since no one else will .I am sure there are some americans out there that can find out where these numbers an address or something .If you can find them contact me at .513-376-4088 I am not worried about those thieves, scum of the earth that hide like a thief in the night .I just heard from them again this week. They threatened me if let the scam out because I told them I  was able to trace them .They are calling back now wanting to get in your computer to make an adjustment then they will return your money .DONT BUY IT

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