Microsoft Warning Alert Computer Scam

Very early this morning, I was using a new to me, used Dell laptop computer that I just bought yesterday, when I got a **Microsoft Warning Alert** pop up screen that took control of my computer.  It looked like this:

Windows Warning Alert
Malicious Spyware/Riskware Detected
Error FXX000
Please call us immediately at: +1-888-371-0333
Do not ignore this critical alert.
If you close this page, your computer access will be disabled to prevent further damage to our network. Your computer has alerted us that it has been infected with a Spyware and risk ware. The following information is being stolen…
> Financial Data
> Facebook Logins
> Credit Card Details
> Email Account Logins
> Photos stored on this computer
You must contact us immediately so that our technical support can walk you through the removal process over the phone to protect your identity. Please call us within the next 5 minutes to prevent your computer from being disabled or from any information loss.
Toll Free: +1-888-371-0333

Because this was a new to me, used computer, I was suspicious and angry about this alert, I had never gotten one of these alerts before.  I was willing to call this technical support telephone number, which in my case was 844-313-9359, to see if this was a scam or not.

When I dialed this number, the person who answered was from India, and he said that he was Microsoft Support.  He wanted to know what the error message was.  He told me to hold down the Microsoft icon key on the keyboard, and type the letter “R”, which brought up a dialog box.  In this dialog box, he instructed me to type in “iexplore support123.ga”, which I did.

I was suspicious about this process.  When the computer screen showed that I was accessing the ConnectWise site, I stopped this process and I told the guy that I didn’t believe that he worked for Microsoft, and I hung up the telephone.  Microsoft does not need to use other parties’ websites or software to perform diagnostics.

Performing a Google search for “scam 844-313-9359”, I found one, and only one internet article explaining what this scam was.

The ConnectWise company, is a provider of software that allows other people to remotely access and control your computer, which is something that you should never allow without knowing and understanding who you are dealing with and what this means.

I telephoned the ConnectWise company in Tampa, and I explained to them about the pop up screen/virus “Microsoft Warning Alert” that was fraudulent and not from Microsoft, the fraudulent Microsoft Tech Support number 844-313-9359, the person who answered the phone fraudulently stating that he was Microsoft Support, and then being directed to enter in “www.support123.ga”, which brings up the ConnectWise site.

The security person that I spoke to at ConnectWise confirmed that once you download the ConnectWise software, the scammer would be able to remotely access and monitor your computer to collect bank account and credit card account usernames and passwords in order to log in to these accounts and transfer money.

Once you download the ConnectWise software, the only indication that your computer is being remotely monitored, is a small mirror icon at the bottom of the screen, which I probably would not have paid any attention to, and most people would not have paid any attention to.

I telephoned Microsoft, and I spoke to a technical support person from India, and I explained what had happened.  She said that yes this was a fraud/scam/virus, did I need any help with removal?  I said no, I just wanted to give Microsoft all of the information so that they could try to stop this.  Microsoft collected the information that I gave them.

What I am angry about, is Microsoft is so domineering in accessing your computer, searching your computer, downloading updates, turning off and restarting your computer, and constantly posting screen messages, that it did not seem too abnormal to receive a “Microsoft Warning Alert” pop up screen.  Then, there are scammers that have 1-800 numbers, who answer the phone and claim to be Microsoft Support.

How does Microsoft allow this to happen?  How does the company ConnectWise allow scammers to use their software to steal people’s bank account and credit card account information?

Especially if you are an older adult, and you recall telephoning Microsoft Support after receiving a Microsoft Warning Alert, and you went through any process with Microsoft Support, you need to make sure that you were not led into downloading ConnectWise or any similar software onto your computer.  This software is not a virus, so it will not be detected by anti-virus security programs.  It does allow other people to remotely monitor everything that you do on your computer, so you need to get this removed.

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2 thoughts on “Microsoft Warning Alert Computer Scam

  1. The internet…you will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy, and must be cautious.

    I personally do not use any kind of antivirus software other than what is between my ears. I also highly recommend that people also disable internet explorer and use literally any other browser with an add blocking extension because it keeps sketchy pop ups from existing, and it also disrupts the corporate control over legitimate advertising which serves to limit free thought and control finances. They can attack us with cyber weapons, but we can also fight back in kind.

    This also touches on the “Fappening” event a few years ago where sensitive data was put into insecure locations. The “victims” and media SJW’s made a fuss about how wrong the situation was even though the “victims” put themselves in that situation in the first place. To me, it’s the same as putting a pound of crack cocaine in a glass box on the back step of a crack house, and putting an unpickable lock on the box and leaving a brick next to it. ” You crack heads better not steal my crack!”.

    I also advise that every person of able body and mind have a set of plans and procedures for every conceivable life event such as natural disasters, finances, medical emergencies, travel safety, personal defence, etc. The “authorities” do a good job of showing up only when they least useful.

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    1. Rusty,
      In the past when I have had a near miss with my bank account, credit card, or other information being stolen, I have called banks and credit card companies to ask them about procedures for recovering money after fraudulent transactions, and just about every time I would get a much lower level customer service employee at a call center in India or Dallas, than they use for the initial sign up with their company. In other words, if you ever had to try to recover money that was fraudulently transferred from your Bank of America or Wells Fargo account, you would be dealing with a $10 per hour call center employee in Dallas, who would be saying O.K., can I get your name, telephone number, date of birth, address, social security number, account number, and then they would ask, “Why do you think that this money was stolen?” If you answered because I did not withdraw, write a check, or authorize the withdrawal of all the money from this checking account, they would probably say, “What makes you think that this money was stolen?” They themselves probably never have more than $500 or $1,000 in a bank account, are often overdrawn, and they don’t see anything particularly wrong or out of the ordinary that you now have a $0 account balance. They would say that they were filing a claim, “Thank you for using Wells Fargo, have a good day”.

      In about one month, you would receive a letter from Wells Fargo or Bank of America saying, “We have investigated this matter, and we can find no wrong doing on our part in regard to the disputed transactions.”

      If you had said from the beginning, “I have no idea how this happened, I did not authorize these withdrawals or provide my bank account information to anyone”, a bank would probably be legally responsible for the unauthorized withdrawals, because the account holder did not make the withdrawals, authorize the withdrawals, or provide any information for anyone to make these withdrawals, it would be a theft from the bank. However, if you ever said, “I might have had a computer virus on my computer that read my account information”, the bank would probably try to say that you provided the information to make the withdrawal from your account, by not keeping your bank account information secure.

      Like

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