You know what the problem with kids today is? They keep falling for tech support scams. Okay, folks aged 18-35 aren’t kids, but adults. But it seems they are adults with some more security instincts when it comes to tech security despite it being a part of their lives for as along as they can remember.
Microsoft recently conducted a survey as a part of National Cyber Security Awareness Month. They found that nearly 66% of people have been contacted by a tech support scammer at some point during the past year.
You know those guys, they call, email, or send a pop-up claiming that you have some kind of computer or phone problem. You’d think at this point, most people would recognize the scams for what they are. Unfortunately, 20% of those contacted keep communicating with the scammers and continue the interaction. They either downloaded software, provided remote access to their device, or gave their credit card information to the scammers.
What some may find surprising is the age range of those who continue to communicate with the scammers. A full 50% of those who are fooled are Millennials between the ages of 18 and 34. In contrast, only 17% were over 55, and 34% were between 36 and 54. Sadly, 55% of users in the U.S. who continued communicating with the scammers lost money.
These crooks aren’t just sticking to their old tricks of calling senior citizens at home and pestering them. Since most younger folks don’t even have a home phone, crooks are using new tools.
When you break down the victims by age, 44% of those 65 and older have been contacted through a phone call and 33% by an email. Younger folks are more likely to be redirected from a fraudulent website (around 50% reported this) or tricked by a fake pop-up warning.
Here are some important things for people of all ages to remember:
Tech support is never going to contact you unsolicited.
Don’t buy their software or services and never give up control of your device unless you know you are communicating with a company that you’re already a customer with. You call them, don’t wait for them to call you.
Don’t click up on pop-up warnings. If you think there’s a problem with your device. Open your security software and run a scan.
Be careful out there kids.