Police have received reports of an increasing number of ‘tech support’ scams across the Island, which involve scammers making contact and using scare tactics to trick people into paying for unnecessary technical support services to ‘fix’ a non-existent problem with an individual’s device or software. The goal of such scams is to steal personal or financial information.
There are two main ways these scams are conducted. Knowing what these are will help people know the best way to respond:
The scam may be carried out using urgent pop-ups warning people that their computer has a serious problem, telling them not to turn it off, and giving a phone number to call. Real error messages from Microsoft or other tech companies do not include phone numbers to call for support. The police urge people NOT to call the number or click any links. Instead, they should restart their device immediately.
The scam may involve unsolicited phone calls or messages warning people they’ve spotted a critical problem with their computer or account that they need to fix. Police say NOT to click any links or call any numbers in the message and not to give the caller remote access to a computer or any personal information like passwords or account numbers. Instead, they say people should delete the suspicious messages. If it’s a call, hang up.
If you believe you have suffered financial loss or had your computer compromised as a result of one of these scams, please contact the RCIPS Financial Crime Investigation Unit at RCIPS.FCU@rcips.ky
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