Protect Yourself from Support Scams/Scareware

Support Scam Attacks


A support scam or scareware attack is when an unethical hacker will pretend to be a computer support and tell a user that there is a virus on their computer.


Indicators of a Support Scam

A support scam can start as either a window pop-up or a voicemail that your computer has a virus, malware, or has been compromised. The message will tell the user that they need to call a specific phone number to get rid of the virus.

If the user calls the phone number, the person will try to sell the user an expensive anti-virus scanner and/or try to get remote access to the computer. They will tell the user not to turn-off their computers while they are “fixing” the issue. In both of these scenarios, the attackers will either install malicious files, steal files, add the device to a bot-net, or all of the above.


How to Handle a Support Scam

Do not call the phone number listed. Close the application that made the pop-up occur. If you have called the phone number that was listed, immediately hang up and turn off your computer. This will stop the attackers from accessing your computer

Please fill out this form to alert the Mines ITS department that your computer has been compromised: ITS will contact you to run scans on your device and make sure that your Mines account was not compromised.


If you have any questions about Support Scams, please contact the Mines Security team by emailing


Article ID: 124341
Mon 1/11/21 3:50 PM
Fri 5/20/22 2:50 PM