FTC shuts down phony tech support firms that conned $120 million from customers

Shawn Knight

Posts: 14,141   +154
Staff member

ftc fcc scam tech support telemarketer

The Federal Trade Commission was recently granted a court order to shut down two telemarketing operations responsible for running what’s being described as massive tech support scams.

According to the FTC, it starts innocently enough when a consumer downloads a free trial version of security software designed to scan and detect errors. Naturally, the software finds loads of “errors” regardless of whether or not the system actually has any problems.

In order to fix the errors, the user is prompted to purchase the “full” version of the software which can cost anywhere between $29 and $49. After doing so, victims are then instructed to call a toll-free number to “activate” the software.

ftc fcc scam tech support telemarketer

They are instead connected to telemarketers that use deceptive scare tactics to deceive them into shelling out even more money for further unneeded support to the tune of up to $500.

The two cases filed against the alleged scam artists are as follows:

  • In the first case, the defendants selling software include PC Cleaner Inc.; Netcom3 Global Inc.; Netcom3 Inc., also doing business as Netcom3 Software Inc.; and Cashier Myricks, Jr. The telemarketing defendants include Inbound Call Experts LLC; Advanced Tech Supportco. LLC; PC Vitalware LLC; Super PC Support LLC; Robert D. Deignan, Paul M. Herdsman, and Justin M. Wright.
  • In the second case, the defendants selling software include Boost Software Inc. and Amit Mehta, and the telemarketing defendants include Vast Tech Support LLC, also doing business as OMG Tech Help, OMG Total Protection, OMG Back Up, downloadsoftware.com, and softwaresupport.com; OMG Tech Help LLC; Success Capital LLC; Jon Paul Holdings LLC; Elliot Loewenstern; Jon-Paul Vasta; and Mark Donahue.

Both complaints allege that the defendants violated Section 5 of the FTC Act, the Telemarketing Sales Rule and the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act. If any of these names sound familiar, there’s a good chance that you (or someone you know) fell victim to the scam. 

Permalink to story.

 

Skidmarksdeluxe

Posts: 8,645   +3,289
The oldest scam known to man is to prey on the ignorance of others and every living soul can be scammed. it's a despicable practice and one that will never go away, it is something that can genuinely be termed "futureproof".
 

BlueDrake

Posts: 378   +113
If only they would get those, who are pretending to be Microsoft as well. I've had a call from supposedly Microsoft, as did numerous others to tell you about errors on your system. It's quite silly and I feel bad, for people getting scammed by *****s like this. Depriving people of money, just because you can is so disgusting. Most times scam artists and such, don't get a deserving punishment for what they do.
 

lipe123

Posts: 972   +561
What I find amazing is when we watch US channels here in Canada I see ads for these types of PC cleaner products that promise to take care of any virus and tune up your pc to run great.

Now I've been working as a PC tech for 15 years or so but I've NEVER ONCE seen any one of these products actually work as advertised. How are these companies allowed to make false adverts on national TV like that?!

Doesn't the US have laws like in Canada that if you sell snake oil on TV your company can get shut down?
 
It's a start but I want to see them stop the Indian call centers' playing the microsoft scam where they call you and claim they have received errors reports and wish to help you "fix them".
They have you check the event viewer and of course, many, many errors are listed. Most of us know these are harmless but the scammers try to sell you a "fix" for up to a couple hundred dollars.
I get several calls from these scammers per week and even sometimes more than one per day.
 
Just visit YouTube and enter, Indian Call Center Microsoft Scam.
You will be able to view many recordings made by computer techs and software engineers.
It's also great entertainment to watch the computer savvy posters give the scammers a dose of their own medicine. hey waste lots of the call center rep's time and it is delightful.
Often the caller breaks down and begins to swear at the person they called to "help".
 

Uncle Al

Posts: 8,763   +7,675
And to think .... this is the same FTC that Congress said was an "unnecessary and non-productive burden" on businesses. Now if we could get them to go after all those "payday loan" operations that operate just like Loan Sharks or at least force them to come under the Banking Act so their interest rates, etc. could be regulated. And while we're at it, how about turning them lose on all those damn roofing companies that keep calling me and telling me my roof to shot and needs to be replaced ..... all of 8 months after I did it! LOL
 

Uncle Al

Posts: 8,763   +7,675
Hey No one .... I get calls from an obvious Indian that tells me my Windows is causing problems and I need to fix it ..... I tell them my windows are fine and what problems are they causing .... she says it's causing all sorts of problems on the internet. I tell her my windows are not connected to the internet so she asks what kind of windows I have and I tell her Pella Windows. She says no no no, tell me what kind of computer do you have and I tell her I don't have a computer; but I do have an old adding machine, could that be the problem??? ................ CLICK!

Sometimes it's great to be old!
 
G

Guest

"Hello, I am calling from Kelvinator. Is your refrigerator running at the moment?"
 
It's a start but I want to see them stop the Indian call centers' playing the microsoft scam where they call you and claim they have received errors reports and wish to help you "fix them".
They have you check the event viewer and of course, many, many errors are listed. Most of us know these are harmless but the scammers try to sell you a "fix" for up to a couple hundred dollars.
I get several calls from these scammers per week and even sometimes more than one per day.

This company calls itself Geeksupport. They have you pay for and download Optimizer Pro, which is really an infection for any techs out there already know this. They take payment under the name Safecart and I personally have answered their call at least 20 times throughout the year. Sometimes I tell 'em to stick it where the sun don't shine, sometimes I put them on hold for over an hour, sometimes I'm just sick of messing with them and hang up. I've had at least three clients that were scammed by them and lost over $3K in total to them. Two had their machines lock them out and only a fresh install was able to remove the infection. One customer actually had their system wiped clean by them when he wouldn't pay more $$. Is there any way to help fight these A holes?
 
Last edited by a moderator: