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Suspicious "Technical Support" phone call


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#1 Capn Easy

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 07:50 PM

I couldn't find an appropriate place in the "Security" section to post this, so I figured I'd post this here.

 

About a week ago my wife bought a new computer from Dell, but it hasn't been hooked up yet.  Tonight she got a phone call from someone identifying herself as being from "Dell Technical Support."  They asked for me by name, but since my wife bought the computer she took the call.  Unfortunately, perhaps, she took this person seriously, but couldn't fully understand her because of the caller's heavy accent, she was calling from a noisy room (possibly a call center), and the caller was using *unusual* terminology.  Finally, she handed the phone to me.

 

The caller once again introduced herself as being from "Dell Technical Support" and told me that they were getting "signals" from our new Dell computer and that our personal information was at risk.  At this point I began asking some leading questions.  Unfortunately, from my line of questioning my wife figured out what I was doing and began laughing so loudly that I had even more difficulty understanding the caller.  It sounded like she wanted me to sit at the computer while she walked me through some instructions.

 

Anyway, I apologized and asked her to mail me the information.

 

 

The only thing that REALLY bothers me is the fact that the call came so quickly after the purchase of the computer.  It could be a wildly lucky coincidence, but I'd really like to notify Dell about it.

 

Does anyone know if there's an approved procedure for this?  Thanks!



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#2 the_patriot11

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 09:44 PM

you made a good  call, this was indeed most likely a scam. If you haven't even hooked up the computer, then theres no chance they could be receiving signals from it-thats the first clue.

 

As far as they figuring out your name, and such, well, its possible they have someone inside the company (im assuming you registred the computer for warranty stuff) or even at the store you work with, its also possible they simply figured your name out online and guessed you had a dell (a lot of people have dell computers) in any case, dont give out any personal information about you on these calls, and it probably wouldn't hurt to call dell customer support and report the issue to them.


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#3 rotor123

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 10:42 PM

Take a look at these, Sound Familiar?

 

[Scam] Call: "Your computer is infected" scam. http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r28048626-Scam-Call-qYour-computer-is-infectedq-scam.

 

Trying to unmask the fake Microsoft support scammers! http://www.securelist.com/en/blog/208193750/Trying_to_unmask_the_fake_Microsoft_support_scammers [Scam] Suspicious activity http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r27822201-Scam-Suspicious-activity

 

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#4 Capn Easy

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 11:12 PM

Yep, I thought it might be a coincidence, but it's still uncannily good timing.

 

 

The computer was bought direct from Dell, via their website.

 

I did call Dell, just in case this wasn't a coincidence.  Unfortunately, Dell's "customer service" remains unimpressive.  I got bounced around to 4 people, all in the technical support or customer service departments, over the course of 45 minutes -- not including time spent with their telephone robot.  They all agreed it didn't sound like a call they would have made, but that was the best they could do.  I'm going to follow up with an old-school, snail mail letter to Dell requesting attention from their security department.  I would just like to ensure that their customer account records are secure.



#5 ddeerrff

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 11:25 PM

I'm afraid that you might find that the call was from a third party service provider that contracts with Dell.  They have access to your account info.  They are not supposed to make calls like these, but they do.  They are trying to sell you an extended service contract.  Can't remember the third party org name...  iyogi or some such.


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#6 FlannelBack

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 03:23 PM

I'm leaning towards ddeerrff's explanation Capn Easy.

I had the same thing happen to me a while back. The caller identified himself and that he represented such & such company. Said that they were part of "Dell Technical Support." He was asking about security and backing up.

However, he made no such claim that they were receiving any kind of information from my computer, although he did infer that it was possible the computer could be transmitting information that it shouldn't be.

Like you, I kind of ran him through the mill.

I finally asked him, "Since we're talking security here, how do I know you are who you say you are?" That flummoxed him a bit. Anyway, I did a reverse lookup of the phone number he called from. The company was legit. I contacted Dell via a "Contact us" link and they confirmed that indeed the company was affiliated with Dell.

Unfortunately, I can't remember the name of the company.



#7 Capn Easy

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 10:45 PM

Yes, I think ddeerrff may have gotten it.  That would explain how they knew about the computer -- and it's a lot less sinister than my first suspicion.  Still, I spent more than an hour on two seperate calls to Dell trying to get answers.  They either couldn't understand or couldn't get off script.  I'm going to write a short letter to their corporate offices.

 

Thanks, all.



#8 Nawtheasta

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 05:56 PM

I got calls last summer from someone claiming to be from MS saying my computer was sending out bad E mails , etc. and to go to a certain web site to fix it. I put on a fake acent and acused the caller of being a thief, "Your Mother would be ashamed at you trying to infect an innocent person's computer" etc. Just rolled off his back like water off a duck. I finally just hung up. Figured at least while he was talking with me he was not taking advantage of someone else.



#9 kingtron

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 06:10 AM

It sounded like a scam. There's no way an outsider will know what's going on with your computer unless they're right in front of it. And I've received a call like that, too, but mine purportedly came from Microsoft. The caller told me the same thing but I realized it was a scam right away and hung up. 



#10 kingtron

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 06:17 AM

Besides, when I Googled the phone number, I pulled up http://www.callercenter.com/206-456-0661.html where several complaints are posted against the caller. Apparently, this scammer is still at large.

 

It's sad how these scammers can easily call people, try to scam them and then get away with it. 



#11 4dude

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 02:25 AM

Yes just hang up STRAIGHT AWAY!!!!!!!




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