Microsoft Windows 10 kicked off 2019 on a high, as the most popular operating server in the world, according to netmarketshare.com. Windows 10 overtook Windows 7 as the most popular OS in December 2018 and increased its lead again in January 2019.

Windows 10 User Numbers - DC Networks

Unfortunately, cybercriminals are capitalising on the momentum of Windows 10 by targeting users with various email, web, and phone scams. These scams are designed to trick personal and business users alike into installing ransomware and other malware.

One particular scam has emerged that appears in internet browsers and pretends that is an issue with your version of Windows 10. The scam display a warning that your version of Windows is damaged and prompts users to click ‘update’ within the window. Once you click the ‘Update’ button, you are then prompted to download the malware.

You should note that Microsoft never notify users of updates in this way.

“Microsoft does not initiate calls to customers to assist with Windows 10 installation or technical support, nor do we send emails with installation files attached. If you have been contacted by telephone or if you have received such emails with attached installation files, consider these fraudulent and do not share your personal information or open the attachment.”

Keep an eye out

For the most part, these scams can be spotted easily enough. One key trigger to watch out for is alerts coming up while you are browsing the internet. Whether it is a popup or not, if you are browsing the internet and you see a message like this, do not click on any links or download any files you are prompted to.

Scams like this can make it difficult to close the web page you are on. The simplest way to get around these scams is to end the browser process by opening “Windows Task Manager”, selecting the process for the browser that is showing the scam and clicking “End task”.

Phone scams

Many of these scams go beyond a simple prompt to download a malware file and display a phone number for you to call.

Windows Phone Scam Popup - DC Networks

These scams are only slightly more elaborate but don’t be fooled just because they have a number you can dial. If you need to speak to a Microsoft support agent, you can look the number up for the support line in your country on the Microsoft website here:
https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4051701/global-customer-service-phone-numbers.

Alternatively, you can contact us on enquiries@dcnetworks.ie for IT support from the DC Networks team.