Variation of an existing scam

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A new variation of the popular ‘tech support’ scam has been spotted.

The latest iteration uses pop ups created to appear as though they are from your internet service provider.

These pop ups encourage you to call the ‘tech support’ number listed in order to receive telephone assistance. The ultimate goal is to get you to install remote control software on your computer.

The US based security firm Malwarebytes has seen these pop-ups in action, with one security consultant from the company noting how the personalised nature of the email almost led him to believe it was real.

“It caught me by surprise and I almost thought that it was real. It was a page from my ISP telling me my computer was infected. It was only when I looked in closer detail that I saw it was a scam,”

While most pop-ups are ‘dumb’ in the sense that they present one message and hope that it attracts some unsuspecting person, this new pop up can tailor itself to present a message based on your service provider, thus adding to its perceived legitimacy.

If you are in any doubt as to whether or not a pop up is legitimate, please get in touch and our technicians will be able to assist you after creating an ad-hoc support ticket.

Automatic upgrade to Windows 10

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Have you been caught out recently with Windows automatically upgrading you to Windows 10 even though you’ve not consented to the upgrade?

Well, with just two month remaining to upgrade to Windows 10 for free, Microsoft are turning up the heat with what appears to be a rather sneaky push to get people to upgrade.

The latest tactic is to turn the X in the top right hand corner of the upgrade prompt box (the one that usually dismisses a dialogue box) into a ‘Sure, I agree to this upgrade’ action.

Microsoft have confirmed this on its support pages stating: “If you click on OK or on the red “X”, you’re all set for the upgrade and there is nothing further to do,”


Update: 25 May 2016

According to the BBC:

Microsoft told the BBC it had modified the pop-up two weeks ago as a result of criticism: “We’ve added another notification that confirms the time of the scheduled upgrade and provides the customer an additional opportunity for cancelling or rescheduling the upgrade.

“If the customer wishes to continue with their upgrade at the designated time, they can click ‘OK’ or close the notifications with no further action needed.”

Cortana now locked to Bing

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As of today April 28, 2016 users will no longer be able to use third party search engines with the Windows 10 search assistant named Cortana.

Cortana Search Box

Up until recently it was possible to use browser extensions and registry edits to set Google as the default engine for Cortana searches instead of Bing.

The reason for restricting users ability to use another search provider, such as Google, is because Microsoft have noted that doing so leads to a ‘compromised experience that is less reliable and predictable.’

Apple’s SIRI and Google’s Android voice search both lock the user into using their own search tools so this move is not that surprising.

The battle for search engine market share continues!

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