Hi Everyone,

Just this last week, I helped someone who had been tricked into paying a significant amount of money for "remote computer support" and "virus protection".

Here's how the scam happened:

The laptop had been purchased new from a larger retailer. A six month trial of a (mostly legit) anti-virus and security software came with the computer, but had just expired. The owner of the computer searched online for anti-virus software. Probably after accidentally clicking on a "mal-vertising" search result, a screen came up saying that the computer had been infected with viruses and to call a phone number.

Stop right there!

If anything ever comes up on your computer instructing you to call someone you don't know for computer help, that's a huge red flag. Don't make that call.

If you would make a call like that, very likely you'll be talking to a con(fidence)-man who will convince you of the urgency to take action and pay him several hundred dollars to clean and secure your computer.

Unfortunately, I see this kind of thing far too often. In this particular case, the con-man had installed a backdoor software called "supremo" to monitor and control the computer. It was difficult to remove, as it didn't show up in the "Remove Programs" list in Windows and would just automatically start again after I manually ended the "supremo" process. Not cool at all to have something like that on your computer!

The best thing to do if you have computer questions or concerns is to talk with someone you know or can meet in person. While there are probably reputable remote computer support companies, my experience has led me to be highly suspect of anyone wanting to "help" me with tech issues over the phone or computer remote control.

Also, I recommend talking with older members of your family. Many times they just aren't aware that scams like this could happen to them. Giving them a heads up and warning could save both you and them a lot of headache and effort trying to clean up after a scam like this.

Stay safe out there!

Refurbished Computers

I do have refurbished laptop and desktop computers available for sale, if you know anyone who would benefit from purchasing one. The systems I sell come with a 1 year hardware warranty and have been upgraded with Solid State Drives.

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Until next time,
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