This is prompted by an article in ArsTechnica about the takedown of a phoney Tech Support company operating from India. There are many others still operating. The company that was targeted by the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) specifically advertised itself as "McAfee Tech Support" and many McAfee users looking for McAfee's genuine Tech Support number will have been deceived by this company's paid-for advertisements in Google searches - paid advertisements appear at the top of any list of search results and are a favourite method of diverting people away from a legitimate site to a phishing site or a phoney imitation site.
The company the FTC went after was called "PCCare247" but it is common for the same phone number that you find in these paid-for ads to be used by several supposedly different companies. If in doubt, enter the phone number into Google (or whichever search engine you use). If you have SiteAdvisor and WOT installed in your browser check the company's reputation and read any reviews before you contact them. There may be some reputable companies out there offering PC Tech Support, but there are many many phony rip-off companies that you should avoid at all costs.
These companies often use devious means to promote themselves. One company managed to get itself spammed right here in the McAfee Community, until I noticed it and removed the posts (but only after that glowing testimonial had been visible for a whole year).
See also this article from the Better Business Bureau -
Tracey Romine has written a blog article on this topic which is worth reading :
Here are a few numbers to avoid - I'll add some more when I come across them. Feel free to add your own example (with the name of the company using it).
1-844-709-0775 Unknown - boiler-room scam
1-855-380-6445 (This was PCCare247.com, may be used others. Note : apparently linked to vSupport)
1-855-593-3163 (microtecsupport.com; also in UK Canada Australia. T&C identifies their website as pccareexperts.com)
1-855-803-4636 (itassists.com - which is vSupport LLC. Note : apparent links with PCCare247)
1-877-382-1594 (IYogi.com : this company is borderline, needs watching)
1-888-866-2025 (itechline.com : cold-callers; many complaints)
1-888-676-3801 E_Racer Tech : based in Boynton Beach, Florida
Edit - November 2014 : FTC takes down Florida-based fake tech support companies - see HERE
Message was edited by: Hayton - add some more phone numbers on 22/05/14 15:54:03 IST
Message was edited by: Hayton - add company information on 22/05/14 16:10:16 IST
Message was edited by: Hayton - add review links on 22/05/14 19:40:37 IST
Message was edited by: Hayton - noting links between vSupport and PCCare247 - on 22/05/14 19:50:19 IST
Message was edited by: Hayton - link added to Tracey Romine's blog article on 24/05/14 03:07:56 IST
I have no idea but anything like that I usually monitor for a while, but I think you may be right and that website is considered risky by WoT, strangely SiteAdvisor has no page at all for that website. Am banning as we speak....
(Correct me if I am wrong? But is this the same company that "Advertises" McAfee support online?)
This is to clarify my post made Yesterday in regards to "Guruaid CS" As stated,I reported it as "Spam"
Message was edited by: catdaddy on 5/23/14 7:21:24 AM EDT
Thank you Ex_Brit for your prompt attention to this matter. I am no Moderator as it clearly stipulates in my Signature. I am only a concerned Consumer trying to assist in anyones issues, that I feel comfortable in attempting to do so.
Having said this...I have "Measured Twice" and made certain that any suggestion I may make,is appropiate.
All the very Best,
Thank you for the valuable input. I posted something similar to the same issue about (2) weeks ago in "Breaking Security News" in regards to how "Agressive"-"Persistent" these scammers have become. The article even mentioned as you clearly stated, that these individuals/companies even posed as Support from McAfee,Symantec,Microsoft,and many others.
The complete post can be found in "Breaking Security News" a incerpt from my original post is HERE
Kind Regards,Message was edited by: catdaddy on 5/23/14 2:25:31 PM EDT
Timely piece to post, Hayton. Other companies advertising themselves in search results as 'McAfee Support', include Guruaid, iYogi, myphonesupport. None of these companies are the official McAfee Product Support team. We don't charge our customers to help them with product issues.
If I am not terribly mistaken,I reported (1) if not (2) as Spam a couple of weeks ago,and Ex_Brit took care of it in short order. I noticed the "GuruAid CS" affixed to the Username.
Just thought I would add this...
What to do if you have been taken in by a fake "McAfee Support" company
If you have paid for technical support services from a company claiming to be McAfee, to be a McAfee partner, or to be affiliated to or recommended by McAfee, you may be able to reclaim any money you paid them if you paid by credit card. Contact your credit card company - I don't guarantee that they will allow you a refund, but that is the official advice given by the US Federal Trade Commission.
For US customers of McAfee only
The FTC have issued guidelines for computer users who have been the victims of cold-calling by PC Support scammers. Some of their advice is relevant even if you were the one who contacted the company after seeing a misleading advertisement online.