Cold callers offering IT support
The world of IT can be very confusing place! It's no wonder so many people come to professionals like us to keep everything running smoothly. Unfortunately some people like to take advantage of the confusion to line their own pockets.
One method some less reputable companies are using involves cold calling people to inform them there is a virus or problem with their PCs and that they have called up to fix it. They ask you to either download a piece of software or login to a website where they can then gain remote access to your PC, fix the issue and bill you for the trouble.
Now the use of remote access software to fix someones PC problems is not uncommon. Most companies who offer IT support will be able to remote control your computer, find out exactly what's causing a problem and fix it there and then. Common tools IT companies use to do this include teamviewer and logmein where you either need to run a bit of software or login to a website. The important point is that either way you need to do something to let them have access.
Now the big warning sign should be the fact they have called you out of the blue to tell you there is a problem with your PC. No one should be able to tell anything about your PC (or even that you have a PC) let alone that there is a problem with it without you specifically giving them access. Anyone who tells you they have been monitoring your PC and it has any kind of problem or has a virus is very likely to be lying to you.
In moderate instances cold callers offer a free PC health check or some such scheme in the hope they can fix something (or pretend to fix something) and send you a bill for their trouble. In the worst case they could be looking to steal information from you or your PC such as personal information or bank details or even creating problems and holding you to ransom. The big problem is that you wont know what their intentions are until it's too late. We found these reports on www.iswhocalls.me.
I would advise anyone to be very suspicious of cold callers offering IT support especially if they say they have been monitoring your PC. Most importantly don't give anyone remote access to your PC unless you know and trust them, a cold caller could be anyone!