A person I know very well called me last night. “I just got off the phone with Microsoft. They told me to click and enter this. It showed me a bunch of processes going on my computer that shouldn’t be.”
“Wait, what?” I had to interrupt.
“Ya, they called me and by doing these steps it showed what my computer is doing without us even being on the computer. I’m supposed to install this app from their website to clean”, I barged in over him.
“You didn’t! Did you?” Oh boy, I thought here comes the hurt.
“No, I thought I should call you first. You’re the computer expert.”
“Do not install anything. You’ve just been phised. Microsoft does not call people to”, now he interrupts me.
“But all this shit is running on my computer. The guy must be right and my computer is full of bugs.”
“He’s full of shit. What’s my name?”
“What’s my name?”
“What’s his name?”
“The guy? I don’t know. What am I gonna do about all this shit running on my computer? Am I going to have to change my passwords?”
“Ok, you know me. You don’t even know his name but you’re going to take his advise over mine? There’s likely nothing wrong with your computer.”
“Really, but this stuff is happening without me knowing.” I can’t believe he’s still worried.
I send him an email with [ http://www.microsoft.com/security/online-privacy/avoid-phone-scams.aspx ]. “See the line beneath the bullet points that reads ‘Neither Microsoft nor our partners make unsolicited phone calls (also known as cold calls) to charge you for computer security or software fixes.’?”
Finally, he believes me. My question: why did that confirmation from the Microsoft site convince him but I could not?