We got this by way of William Porquet, reposted with permission as we think some of our users should be aware of this. It looks like an overseas boiler room operation is targeting users, the call reported below was received in Toronto, Canada:
The other day one of my older friends in Toronto received a mysterious
cold-call saying that “they” had detected problems with his computer
and that he should follow instructions to resolve them. He was
instructed to hit Windows Key + R and then type “www.onlinepccare.com”
into the box, which launched a web site. Then he was walked through
some (likely bogus) troubleshooting steps, which indicated some (also
likely bogus) errors. Then my friend explained to the caller that he
already had a tech support friend who keeps his computer in good
repair, and ask how much this “service” would cost. He was told by the
call-centre droid it would be $130, at which point my friend hung up
and called me.
So please treat any calls such as this with suspicion. Keep in mind when you are on a call with tech support, most of the time you initiate the call to your tech support, not the other way around. And when you are on a call, most likely you will actually know the name of the website they may be directing you to (although for the most part, you have probably already gone to the website yourself).
The larger issue is that first there was postal mail domain slammers to worry about, then email phishing attacks, now they’re working the voice phone lines.
Actually, now that I think of this, I am conducting market research on the viability of a telephone product that would filter out a call like this (among others), you would be helping matters if you took a short survey I posted on my personal blog about that.