The newest telephone scam I heard of is the Microsoft Licensing Scam. You may get a phone call or a voice mail saying something like this (phone numbers deliberately obscured):
“This is to notify you that your Microsoft Windows license key has been expired in your computer so Microsoft Corporation has stopped the services in your computer. To renew the Windows license key, please call 866 XXX XXXX. Let me repeat. This is to notify you that your Microsoft Windows license key has been expired in your computer so Microsoft Corporation has stopped the services in your computer. To renew the Windows license key, please call 866 XXX XXXX. I will repeat 866 XXX XXXX.”The message obviously was from a computer generated, sort of "mechanical" voice and the stilted English suggest a non-native English speaker behind the whole thing.
Any messages about licensing issues truly from Microsoft would pop up on your computer's screen only during installation or activation. And we all know, if only from experience, that a Microsoft license for the Operating System comes with the computer when you buy it and it is good for the lifetime of the machine.
In Windows services are programs running in the background; they are required for even basic functions of the computer. A computer would not work at all without the required services running in the background.
In the case I read about the recipient happened to be a very, very experienced Windows user; the gentleman called back the 866 number from the message; he said about that call:
"Because the number was toll free, I called it just to see what would happen. An answering machine invited me to leave a message and my number for a callback — I declined.Please remember: Any and all phone calls claiming to come from Microsoft or any company associated with Microsoft are scams. Don't even talk to these people! Do not give them your phone number or ANY OTHER information.
As usual I welcome comments and suggestions right here in the blog. Thank you in advance.