Posted by: David Harley | November 16, 2015

Tech Support Scams and the FTC

Commentary from me for the AVIEN blog, and added to the tech support scam resource page there, regarding an interesting article from The Register – FTC fells four tech-support operations in scammer crackdown – by Shaun Nichols, about the FTC’s latest move in the war against support scams.

The FTC (the US Federal Trade Commission) has turned its attention to ‘four companies and four individuals in its legal complaint (PDF) alleging violations of both the FTC Act and the US Telemarketing Act’.

The violations cited here are in the form of fake system alerts, fake browser alerts, or fake security software alerts that advise the victim of a ‘problem’ with their device and direct them to a ‘helpline’ purporting to represent one of the major operating systems, not only for old-school computers (Windows, OS X, Linux) but for mobile devices such as smartphones.

A preliminary injunction ordered by The United States District Court for the Eastern district of Pennsylvania prohibits the named parties from fraudulent marketing and billing (though you’d think that would be illegal anyway), and effectively freezes their assets while the FTC’s complaint is investigated.

David Harley

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