How to Protect Yourself From a Microsoft Robocall
Your computer safety is of utmost importance to you. Well, not just you, but everyone using a computer, right? With the rising number of fraudsters who can hack your device in many different ways, people have become more concerned about computer scams and how to stop them. According to the Federal Trade Commission data, there were as many as 143,000 reports about tech scams only in 2018.
Fake Microsoft robocalls have disturbed a high number of people recently. Are you, too, among these people? If so, we understand your frustration, and we want to do whatever we can to help you out.
Most Important Things to Know About Robocalls
When an autodialer is used to make calls and deliver pre-recorded messages, we are talking about robocalls. Depending on who is making these calls, the purpose can differ quite a lot. In any case, robocalls are an excellent way to contact a high number of people quickly. Some of the most common uses of this technology include the following:
- Public-service announcements
- Political campaigns
- Charities asking for donations
- Appointment reminders
The problem with robocalls is that there is an increasing number of scammers who use them to fool people. If you make a mistake and answer a robocall scam, the fraudsters can lead you to reveal your sensitive information so they can steal your money or identity. It has become somewhat challenging to differentiate between legal robocalls made with good intentions and scams—but with our tips, you don’t have to worry about it.
How to Recognize Microsoft Robocalls?
When you receive a robocall allegedly coming from Microsoft, you should know that it’s a scam right away—Microsoft never makes robocalls unless they’ve made an appointment with you to do so. The same goes if someone claiming to be from Microsoft contacts you via email or a chat dialogue.
Even if you get confused, you should remember that it’s a scam if you hear the following words: “I’m calling from Microsoft. We’ve had a report from your internet service provider of serious virus problems from your computer.”
To help you recognize Microsoft fraudsters, we suggest you take a look at the most common scenarios that they use:
Offering an antivirus program
|They tell you that your PC shows a dangerous virus and offer an expensive anti-virus program to protect you, which, of course, is completely useless. They can even require access to your computer to show you the alleged problem.|
Selling a solution to get rid of the virus on your PC
|When they offer to sell you the solution for your “virus” problem, the fraudsters may ask for your credit card information and then withdraw a huge amount of money off your bank account.|
Asking you to download Team Viewer
|The scammers most commonly offer to solve your “virus” problem for you by accessing your PC. To achieve that, they will ask you to download a program—probably Team Viewer—which will enable remote access to your computer. If you provide it, you lose the battle immediately—it is then that your computer is actually hacked.|
Asking you to pay a fee
|The scammers may only lead you to believe that there’s something wrong with your PC, while, in reality, everything is in perfect order. However, they can be very convincing. In this case, the presented solution to the problem is for you to pay them a fee for an antivirus program.|
What to Expect When You Receive Robocalls From Microsoft?
Scammers who impersonate Microsoft representatives will ask for your personal information and access to your computer so that they can hack it. Their plan is to get control, corrupt your PC, and then blackmail you—if you don’t pay them the money, they won’t fix it. This is what the fraudsters say, but you shouldn’t believe them—even if you made the mistake of giving them the money, they wouldn’t fix anything.
Why would anyone give them access to their PC? Here’s the problem—these scammers are good at impersonating representatives from Microsoft, and they always tell people that there has been some irregularity spotted and that they want to protect them. In most cases, the fraudsters say that there’s a virus on your PC and that you need to give them access to your computer so they can fix the problem.
They also urge you to let them solve the problem immediately and claim that, if you don’t, your computer will become unusable. So, people don’t have much time to think about anything. Unless you know that no one from Microsoft will ever contact you like this (which you’ve just learned), you can get confused easily and make a huge mistake of believing these fraudsters.
How to Act if You Answer a Microsoft Robocall?
If you don’t realize that it’s a spoofed number and you pick up the phone, you should never take any of the steps that the automated message tells you to. Whether they tell you to press a command to continue or they ask for access to your PC, your personal information, or your credit card info, don’t reveal anything and never give them access.
They will sound convincing, but, remember—Microsoft never calls people to inform them of a virus and offer help. The smartest thing you can do as soon as you hear the beginning of the message is to hang up the phone.
You can expect Microsoft robocalls from these numbers:
How to Stop Microsoft Robocalls?
Ever since you received the first call from people impersonating Microsoft, all you can think about is how to stop robocalls. One of the ways is to report the scammers to Microsoft. If you decide to do this, be prepared to provide the following information on the fraudulent company that contacted you:
- Company name and website URL
- The name of the fake representative you talked to
- Street address
- Country, state, and city
- Scammer’s phone number
- The date of your communication with the fraudsters
- Whether you gave them any money
The form you need to submit will also require you to describe your experience, so make sure you write down as many details as possible right after you finish the call, so you don’t forget something important.
Even though you will need to leave some personal information, you can be sure that Microsoft won’t take advantage of it to contact you for general marketing purposes.
Put Your Number on the Do Not Call List to Fight Microsoft Fake Robocalls
When you face a scammer, things become unpleasant and complicated, especially if you fall into the trap. Whether you get fooled by Microsoft fake robocallers or some other tech support scammers, it’s time to think about a robocall lawsuit as a means to get revenge for what they did.
Before you actually report them, you should try following FCC’s guide on dealing with robocalls, and putting your phone number on the National Do Not Call List. After you take this step, it’s also advisable to check if a number is on the Do Not Call list. This can be done rather easily. Here are your options:
- Dial 1-888-382-1222
- Dial 1-866-290-4236 to call via TeleTypewriter
- Verify your registration online
But what if you continue to receive robocalls even after the registration? If you were wondering about Do Not Call expiration, we are here to clear this doubt—there’s no such thing. However, you should always check out Do Not Call exemptions, to be sure that the robocalls you are struggling with are not among these exemptions.
Are All Robocalls Illegal?
There is no doubt that all robocalls are annoying and can disrupt your daily routine when you receive them all the time. Nonetheless, not all of them are illegal. Not only are some robocalls legal, but they can’t even be blocked no matter how much you wanted to stop them. This usually goes for political campaign robocalls and those coming from charitable organizations. To be able to recognize an illegal robocall, you should know some major differences between these two categories, including the following:
|If you give a company your written consent, allowing them to contact you via robocalls, they are entitled to do so.||If a robocall is coming from an unknown company and it’s trying to sell you something, it is illegal.|
|If people carrying out a government-approved study make a robocall to ask you to participate in the study, it is always legal.||Robocalls are illegal if they are only made to look like a reputable institution, such as the government, is on the other end of the line.|
|When you give your phone number to a service provider willingly, they are allowed to make robocalls about anything regarding your subscription.||When a robocall asks you to leave your personal information, it is illegal. To protect yourself from scammers trying to commit identity theft, never reveal any sensitive info.|
|When a charitable organization contacts you via a robocall to ask for a donation, that’s legal.||In case a robocaller wants you to expose your credit card number, don’t do it, as that is an illegal robocall.|
|People who struggle with paying bills and have an unsettled debt can expect robocalls from a debt collection agency.||Some scammers only impersonate debt collectors trying to steal your money. They may offer to lower your bills if you transfer the money into a given bank account instead of paying it to the utility company directly.|
Use DoNotPay to Get Revenge on Those Behind a Microsoft Robocall Scam
Simply receiving Microsoft or any other robocalls repeatedly for some time is annoying enough. When they manage to wrong you in any way, the mere annoyance easily turns into anger and helplessness.
There’s no need to feel helpless, though—at least not when you have DoNotPay at your service. In addition to canceling Office 365 subscription, we can help you with Microsoft robocalls. You can use our app to get robocall revenge and sue robocallers for up to $3,000.
We understand that you’ve already been through so much, so we want to make this process as smooth as possible and get you the justice you deserve in only a few simple steps. Here’s what you need to do:
- Log in to DoNotPay via the web browser or an iOS device
- Select Robo Revenge
- Put your number on the Do Not Call list
- Ask for a virtual credit card
- When robocallers call you and ask for your credit card info, give them the virtual credit card number
- When the scammers try to charge your virtual credit card, we get access to their data
- You can then use the info we gathered to write a demand letter or file a lawsuit against them
Understanding How Robo Revenge Works
It might seem complicated at first, but Robo Revenge actually works on a rather simple principle. There are only a few crucial points that you need to be familiar with to understand the entire process. These include the following:
- For a start, you need to know that the free virtual credit card we provide you with is never linked to your real card, so your sensitive information remains fully protected
- Robocallers can’t figure out that this is only a randomly generated string of numbers. They will think that it is your real card number and try to take the money off your account. By doing that, fraudsters reveal their own information to DoNotPay, making it easy for us to figure out who they are
- The information we gather about the scammers is all you need to file a complaint against them
- If you’re not sure how to send a demand letter for compensation, DoNotPay can do that for you
Beware of Other Computer Repair Robocalls
Just because Microsoft fake robocalls are among the most common, that doesn’t mean that they are the only computer repair and tech support scams. So, whenever you receive a robocall offering computer repair for any issue, always think twice before you trust anything they say. The same goes for other scammers impersonating representatives from other companies—never give them access to your PC and never reveal any sensitive information that they can misuse.
You should also think about taking some steps to prevent all unsolicited phone calls, as tech support scams are only one of the many categories of potential robocall scams.
Is It Possible to Prevent Robocalls From Disturbing You?
You are happy enough to know that you can fight back against robocalls, right? But what if we told you that you could take precautionary measures to prevent them from disturbing you in the future? Not all of these measures are one hundred percent effective, but at least they can help you reduce the risk of facing unwanted calls too frequently and being scammed. Here are some suggestions to consider:
- Make sure you list your number on the National Do Not Call List
- Buy an unlisted phone number, so scammers can’t buy it
- Never give your phone number willingly unless you’re completely sure who you’re giving it to
- Never reveal your credit card information if you want to avoid severe credit card issues
- Even though it might sound tempting, you should never accept an extravagant prize out of nowhere—this is only a trap to steal your money or personal information
We Are at Your Disposal in Other Problematic Situations
We understand that robocalls are not the only problem you may encounter on a daily basis. That’s why we offer a variety of other services to help you get justice in other unfair or problematic situations, such as being charged after a free trial or getting an unfair parking ticket. All you need to do is access DoNotPay via the web browser or an iOS device. Here are some other things that our app can help you with:
- Preparing the paperwork for suing someone in small claims court
- Fighting your speeding tickets
- Ensuring compensation for robocall scams
- Helping you out with all credit card-related issues
- Disputing unfair traffic tickets
- Jumping phone queues when calling customer support
- Appealing parking tickets all around the country
- Monitoring and canceling your subscriptions and memberships
- Getting DMV appointments as fast as possible
- Helping you manage accumulated bills
- Ensuring airline compensation for delayed and canceled flights