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Tech Support Scams still evolving

Many New Zealand companies and individuals have been approached by phone scammers posing as Spark, Microsoft and other providers, but who are in fact running tech support scams.

Although this type of scam has been running for a number of years people do still get caught out.  Microsoft have recently released a report (H/T Threatpost) that shows these scams are widespread and constantly evolving, making use of malicious code on compromised websites, malware, and phishing emails as well as the intrusive phone calls that most of us have experienced.

The scammers use a number of psychological tricks to convince people they are legitimate, including a false sense of authority, faking access to systems, and creating a sense of urgency. The scammers will often use the latest security scare for extra persuasion, as Netsafe describe.

Remind your team that tech companies like Microsoft will not call to offer unsolicited support, make sure they know what to look out for in email, and if in any doubt at all, contact your own tech support, don't deal with the scammers.

Thinking about your IT security? This post has some steps to get started with.

If you are concerned that your IT infrastructure may in fact have been compromised, contact your service provider.  You can also get advice from the new NZ CERT and Netsafe

Mike Carroll