I’m distressed right now, because way too many of my clients are being harmed. I’m posting this warning here, to reach as many people as possible:
If you get a phone call, or a web-page, warning you that there are viruses or other problems with your Apple devices, IT IS A LIE. There is no earthly way for anybody who is not in physical contact with your device to KNOW anything about its condition.
Unfortunately, these big-city sharpies are taking advantage of people’s kindness and gullibility, to the cost of around $200, all of the way up to about $2,000. They will leave your Mac cluttered with adware (trying to sell you stuff), and hijack your web-browser to monitor your activities.
These scammers (from India, in every single case) don’t have your best interests in mind. At all.
Some tips to keep in mind:
– There is only ONE, actual, valid phone number for Apple corporate support: 1-800-MY-APPLE. Anything else is bogus.
– Apple hires plenty of fine support-staff who come from India. NONE of them have heavy accents, since this just frustrates customers. Heavy accent? Scammer, pretending to be from Apple.
– NEVER give your passwords to anybody over the phone. Apple Inc. never asks.
– There is only ONE safe, trustworthy method of updating your Flash player: Pull down the Apple Menu, go to System Preferences, and then to Flash Player. Then, click on “Updates’ at the top, and click on “Check now”. ANY other method (such as web-pages saying “Your Flash Player Is Out Of Date”) is most likely a scam, trying to induce you to install multiple bad programs onto your Mac.
– If you need support for your other devices, beware. Scammers have paid Google to let them mess with you. Try this: Go to Google, and type in “HP Printer Support”. Look at the first few, bogus listings. None of them have “hp.com” in their web-addresses. HP offers FREE phone-support, but the scammers at the top of the list want to hook you into paying.
– KEEP UPDATING YOUR DEVICES. Apple can’t protect you, if you’re not up to date: On the iPhone or iPad, go to Settings – General – Software Update. On the Mac, go to Apple Menu – App Store – Updates. If your Mac is able, download and install High Sierra.
– If you HAVE been financially taken advantage of, call the number on the back of your debit or credit card, and cancel the payment. If this outrages the scammers, and they call you, say the phrase “The police have been informed of this scam”, and then hang up. They won’t call back.
– You do NOT need anti-virus programs added to your Mac. The finest one in the world is built into every Apple device. It is called “Gatekeeper”, and it protects you far better than any purchased software. The problem is, people don’t see it, and they assume that they need something, anything to protect them. As long as you keep adding every software update when requested, you are protected and up-to-date.