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2 lakh tech support scams detected in India in Q1 2021: Report

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New Delhi: Cybersecurity researchers said on Monday that they have detected and blocked more than 200,000 tech support scam attacks in India in the first quarter this year.

In tech support scams, fraudsters use scare tactics to trick innocent individuals into purchasing overpriced and unnecessary “support services” to fix an alleged computer, device, or software problem.

Once granted access, bad actors can also install malware, or other malicious programmes that damage the data housed on devices, or even worse, harvest personal information.

According to a report by cybersecurity company Avast, tech support fraud remains a massive issue in India.

“Tech support fraud is increasingly common and targets some of the most vulnerable individuals. Criminals exploit victims through money or personal information,” said Alexej Savcin, Senior Malware Analyst, Avast.

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“Above all, remember that whether it’s a phone call or a website, legitimate tech support won’t ever proactively seek you out to fix an issue. If in doubt, don’t engage, give access to your devices, or share any personal information,” he added.

Criminals with access to this type of sensitive data can leverage it to gain entry into financial accounts, health records, or other essential services.

In addition, fraudsters go to great lengths to convince victims of their legitimacy, including creating web pages that imitate antivirus or firewall software warnings or even setting up fake companies to validate their con.

“Once on the phone, scammers try to convince the callers to establish a remote connection to their computer and sometimes download a second remote management software without the user knowing to keep up a constant connection to the user’s PC,” the researchers warned.

In addition, fraudsters go to great lengths to convince victims of their legitimacy, including creating web pages that imitate antivirus or firewall software warnings or even setting up fake companies to validate their con.


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