I’m Calling About Your Windows Computer…

I was halfway through a pretty decent nap when the phone rang. After slowly picking up the phone, I said “Heeelllooo?”

“I’m calling about your Windows computer” was the reply. He had a thick Indian accent and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t an American Indian accent.

“I have a Linux computer” was my truthful reply.

linux-room

I know about the scam of course. Plenty of my customers have experienced it and it always starts the same. An operator from India calls and convinces his mark that there is something terribly wrong with his computer and it can be fixed by signing up for an annual tech support subscription of only $200 (approx). Sometimes, you may encounter the same people when you run a google search for Microsoft Support or Netflix Support. Be very careful. You should be directed to a Microsoft.com page or a Netflix.com page. Certainly, if you get a call that starts with “I’m calling about your Windows computer,” just hang up quickly. Too many people have lost too much money with this scam and today it’s practically epidemic.

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Fake Chinese USB Flash Drives

not everything in retail packaging is new or genuine

A customer recently brought me several “512 GB” USB flash drives that he had purchased from a web site that ships from overseas. Each 512GB flash drive was purchased for about $7 each. Considering that the lowest price for a 128GB USB flash on Amazon is about $40 and their lowest price for a 512GB version is $465, the $7 bulk rate Chinese price seems unrealistic. I examined one of the drives from a linux computer (PXE booted for safety) and GParted displayed a 500GB partition. However, data could not be reliably saved to the drive. It appears to accept data but files become overwritten as more data is copied to the drive. The flash drives have been reprogrammed to show more than their true capacity. Unfortunately, the hacked nature of these drives makes them useless. So remember! If it seems too good to be true, it’s probably an online scam.