Watch Out for Tech Support Phone Scams

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It has become an all-too-familiar scenario. You get an unrequested call at home or at work from someone telling you that your computer is infected with a virus and they’ll gladly help. They may claim to be from our partner Microsoft, or they may claim to be from Dell, but your gut tells you something is not right.

a couple sit in their living room looking at a Dell Inspiron laptop

I’m a big fan of trusting my gut, and so should you in this situation. Keep in mind, we do not make unsolicited calls asking to charge you to fix an issue you did not report or previously request help with unless you have signed up for our premium support services like Dell Tech Concierge, Dell Premium Support or Dell ProSupport services.

But, cybercriminals are tricky. They do their homework and learn what they can about you or work hard to gain your trust. They may even tell you things about your computer that you think only a legitimate vendor would know. This is a key element to social engineering – a non-technical method cybercriminals use to trick people into loading malware on their systems or revealing credit card information.

The best way to protect yourself is to simply hang up. But, some customers have told us that the phone scams are becoming more relentless – frequently calling them over and over. We regret that they often use our name to perpetuate such harassment and we want to stop it just as much as you.

That’s why, should you decide to do more than simply hang up, we’ve created a new form you can use to report information from these callers that will help us investigate the issue. Some of those details include the phone number used to contact you, any information they know about your Dell system, and the name of any program they want you to download. Information you share through this form will go directly to our Security team, and although you may not hear from them, they will use the information to investigate and to attempt to track down the parties responsible.

You can also report the phone scams to the following authorities:

Protection of your data is a top priority for Dell. We recommend that you not engage such callers, and never give them your credit card information, access to your computer or any other personal information.

Remember, if you’re unsure, trust your gut and simply hang up.

[Update:  We now also have a phone number you can call (8am-5pm Central) to report these phone scams to us: 866-453-1742. If you have already filled out the form, there is no need to call. It is simply an alternate way to deliver the same information to us. This was announced here in an update on this topic from our Chief Security Officer in May 2016.]

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  • CyberGuy23

    I have received over 30 + calls from this scam over the past 60 days – these guys are relentless!!!  They use many different phone numbers to include "No Caller ID".  They have my name and my service tag # and phone number.  How did they receive this sensitive information? – looking at you Dell!  Clearly someone breached your service tag / customer data to call with this specific information, as they didn't just guess my service tag #.  The people on the phone have Indian accents and English is not first language.  I have asked them questions then they hang up or curse at me.  Other times that they call using a number they have called from before they immediately hang up or don't say anything (as if they ready notes about calling me) – i just mute them and listen and i can hear them speaking to each other in what sounds like a call center speaking in foreign language (unaware – i assume) that i am listening.  I tell them not to call again but the calls keep coming.  They are really ruining it for other telemarketers as i am so upset about this harassment that if legitimate telemarketers call they also don't get very far either.  I have NEVER divulged   by computer make/model much less service tag # and only purchased this one (directly from Dell) about 1 month before these calls starting coming – again, looking at you Dell!

  • DELL-Laura

    @CyberGuy23 – I regret to hear that you are receiving these calls. Such phishing scams are increasingly more sophisticated, touch not only technology companies, but all industries, and we have devoted considerable resources to addressing them. We have no indication that customer information was obtained through an external attack. We continuously evaluate our internal physical and technical security measures to determine if there are additional efforts that would further ensure this customer data is secure. I do hope you have taken a moment to share more detail via the form linked above, which can be found at http://www.dell.com/reportphonescams. We investigate any customer complaint received when there is sufficient information to investigate. ~Laura

  • Bob Foster

    I've received a few of these calls. One time, I let the guy carry on for about 30 minutes telling me to do various things on my computer. I was just sitting in my garage drinking a beer, sort of enjoying listening to him and pretending to be shocked when he pointed out the "errors" in my Event Logs. I finally tired of it and called the guy out and told him he should be ashamed of what he's doing. He, in turn, begins calling me and my mom every name in the book. I have to admit, I gave it back to him. But, yeah….these guys are scum and I'm not surprised one of them resorted to death threats.

  • nobodypanic

    I am getting these as well.  I just have to say based on the situation with the laptop in question, and the information they know.  It does look like dell has some security issues.     And if that is the case, they should be going out of their way to let the customers know there is a problem, and to expect this kind of call as they work out the details.  Need to be forthcoming and transparent when this kind of things happens or it will end up doing more damage to the company and brand.

    Right this moment, I am sure there are people falling victim to these scams and if the info these scammers know has come from dell itself, they dell has some serious problems they need to address.  

    I didnt fall victim to the scam so it didnt waste my money but it does sure waste my time and does bring into question how much info was compromised.  

  • nobodypanic

    Sorry but this does not really own up to what is going on.   These scammers have info they should not.   They knew the service tag, some sort of customer number,  my contact info (phone, full name),  and when the machine was shipped to my door.   How would someone get that info?

    This is no longer just about scammers trying to call me.  Its about how they got information about me and my machine.  Was dell hacked?  it does seem like it.  The nature of the info these people have points at it.

    The problem now is how Dell is handling it.    The longer Dell mishandles this,  more of its customers will fall victim to these scammers.   I have spent all kinds of time on the phone with Dell and they avoid talking about where the info these scammers are using is coming  from.    This is bad, horribly handled and will only get worse unless Dell steps up and admits there is a problem, and properly addresses it.

  • DELL-Laura

    @nobodypanic – I'm glad to hear you did not fall victim to this type of scam. As I mentioned before, we continuously evaluate our internal physical and technical security measures to determine if there are additional efforts that would further ensure customer data is secure. And, we encourage our customers to come to us with any information that could facilitate the investigations. I wrote this post for the express purpose of getting word out, so please share with others to help us do that. Thank you! ~Laura

  • Jigme

    I too have received 3 calls.  My first call happened last night and the other 2 this morning.  The facts are consistent with what else has been reported here:  the perpetrators knew my service tag #, phone number (obviously), name, and Dell support history.  (They knew when I had called previously for something and knew the warranty expiration date for the machine in question).  Dell is clearly at fault here as they have allowed their customer support data to be breached (either through a security breach or perhaps internally sold by their own technical support teams abroad).  These are only guesses of course, but it's Dell's responsibility to protect my data.  I used the form to report the issue and notified the FTC– but to me it's Dell that should be responsible as it's their negligence (somehow) that my data has ended up in a criminal's hands to harass me.  The calls are pretty haunting at first when you hear that someone knows something about you.

  • Bird House

    I've also experienced these calls this week and have to agree with Jigme that a security breach with Dell must have happened since they had my computer model, service tag, name, phone number, and knew I'd reported a problem to Dell previously. They almost convinced me it was concerning my last call except it had been 5 months since I called Dell Customer Service with an issue. My husband told me to call Dell Customer Sercice and never allow anyone access to my computer. I reported the phone numbers they called me from, too.

  • stevA

    I have had an event today that is similar to comment from "Cyber"  below.  They have information that would only be available from Dell.  I will report to Dell shortly.  But Dell better fess up to the problem and get there act together on security. This is not evident from "Laura" (Dell) reply.

  • BennyKeck

    I have received numerous calls.  When I challenged them on being from Dell, they rattled off service tag and previous warranty repair info.  Clearly Dell has been hacked and imo should proactively reach out to customers.  

  • DELL-Laura

    @Jigme, @Bird House, @stevA and @BennyKeck – I'm sorry to hear that you've been the recipient of these calls, but appreciate you taking the time to fill out the form to report it. We have no indication that customer information used in these scams was obtained through an external attack. However, we are not dismissing the issue. We have assembled a team of experts that are focused on investigating it. You can read more about that on this more recent blog post from our Chief Security Officer: en.community.dell.com/…/dell-phone-tech-support-scams That post is just part of our ongoing effort to educate our customers on this topic, so watch for more to come.

  • lineisen

    I too have been subject to the nastiness of the Indian scammers. They are nasty and crude and even when you try to get rid of them, they keep coming back. I have never let any of them into my computer, but unfortunately I have called dell support and they have been in my computer numerous times. I believe that one of those times was a scammer that works for you and gave out my information to their friends, because my computer is fu…. up if you know what I mean. How can  the scammers have all my info and know exactly what is wrong with my computer if your tech team did not tell them. I believe I was set up. After your techs tried to fix something they should have been able to, they left something behind in my computer. No where on this blog do I see Dell taking responsibility for this security breach. I can't get anyone from Dell to fix or replace my computer even though I paid extra for this service. I am being told know that it must be a software issue and they don't handle that. Oh unless you pay them extra for it. So know I am stuck with a infected

  • DELL-Laura

    @lineisen – We are actively working with both local and national law enforcement agencies, and other corporations experiencing similar challenges, to pursue action against those who seek to defraud our customers. Please help us by sharing information about the calls you've received via dell.com/reportphonescams. You can also read more of the latest on this topic from our Chief Security Officer John McClurg here: en.community.dell.com/…/dell-phone-tech-support-scams

  • MommysIsland

    I have received a number of calls on both my primary and alternative numbers purportedly from Dell Concierge (my contract expired earlier this year). Two of the three calls today came from Dell Concierge's number which is a contact on my cell phone. The other call had no caller ID. The caller stated as part of Dell Concierge's routine maintenance and monitoring of my computer they had found Microsoft errors coming from it. Despite the fact that the call was shown as coming from Dell, I remained suspicious. I asked him for information to verify that he was from Dell and he proceeded to correctly identify my model computer, its Service Tag and Express code as well as my alternative phone number. I was somewhat satisfied but as he asked me to enter some code on the Run screen, I balked again. My contract had expired. Why would they be monitoring my computer?  I said I wanted a case number so I could call myself and check first. He said that he didn't see how that would help me as the case numbers  change with each call. That was a red flag. I said that was not my experience. He gave me a case number and I hung up. Using the same number as the calls supposedly came from, (877-790-3355) to reach the  "real" Dell Concierge, its agent verified that they had not tried to call me, confirmed my contract had expired and that the case number was not valid. However, the personal information about my computer was correct. Neither that representative nor Dell's fraud department could explain how they had my information or how Dell's  number was used to call me. It occurs to me that perhaps Dell has some rogue Concierge agents overseas, or the fraudsters are using technology I don't understand. Regardless, my personal information has clearly been compromised. I filed a fraud complaint with Dell and the FTC and would urge others experiencing similar calls to to do the same. The FTC's number is 877-382-4357, option 3.

  • DELL-Laura

    @MommysIsland – Way to trust your gut instinct! Thank you for reporting this incident to us through the form at dell.com/reportphonescams, as this means our team investigating the issue is already at work looking into it. I also appreciate your encouragement of others who've experienced similar calls to report them to both us and the FTC. This will aid our ongoing work with both local and national law enforcement agencies and other corporations experiencing similar challenges to pursue action against those who seek to defraud our customers.

  • xpm18651

    Last year I was getting these calls about three times a week. I knew it was a scam from the get go. I would play along for a few minutes and I would tell the idiot to take a hike, to put it mildly. They would call on both my home phone and cell phone and had the make model and tag number of the laptop. It appears to me that some of Dells India support staff would be the most likely people to have sold this information to the scammers. After all all the calls come from people speaking with a Indian accent. Half the time you can't understand them.

    If you want to know how got them to stop calling me, I play a game and act like very old man who doesn't know a laptop from a desktop or an iPhone from an iPad. I would tell them to wait a minute and say I got to ask my wife what we have. Then I tell them she says it's an iPad or iPhone made by Samsung. Then I ask them if they could help her with that. That all I hear on the line is silence for a few seconds and then the they hang up. Sometimes I tell them I can't understand them or to please wait until I switch the phone to the ear with the hearing aid. Then I tell them I still can't understand them and ask them to switch me to someone who speaks English like an American. That really put's them off and they hang up.

    I haven't had any Dell support  scam calls for a long time. Now I get phone calls from the IRS scammers telling me that the IRS is filing a lawsuit against me. However, I can talk to them because it's a recording tell me to call a phone number for information. I just hang up when I hear the recording.

  • gfg967

    I have received no fewer than 50 calls in the past three years. These calls are always made by VOIP. These calls are coming from outside of the USA. I have tried to stop these calls but I was quite unsuccessful in doing so.  I mean you get a call from a guy with a Pakistani accent who says his name is "Dave" from customer service. Yeah right. I try and report it. I have reported it many times. Unfortunately all I have found is that the Federal Trade Commission is more than useless when it comes to helping. I don't even know why they exist. Now, when these people call I just waste their time. I get great satisfaction aggravating these guys to the point where they threaten me. What can they do to me? They are 7000 miles away.

  • Dale Slater

    I get 2 to 3 of these calls each day of the week. This has been going on for the past 6 months. No matter how many times I register with the government's Do Not Call registry (which is useless and a waste of time and taxpayer's money, but that is another subject), these calls continue. Each number that comes into my cell phone is added to my block list. That list grows and grows. What can Dell do about this, since the incoming number changes with each incoming call? The only computers I own are Dell computers. Each one I own was bought online through Dell.com and when one of these calls get through and leave a message, they are able to tell me that my computer is a Dell laptop or desktop.Sometimes they even tell me they are calling from Dell. They have not given me a service tag number or an account number, but I am willing to bet that it is just a matter of time before they can rattle off that number to my voicemail. How is it that they have this information? Either you have had a breach in security or someone inside your organization has sold information. I would hate to think that Dell has sold this information after being assured many times that this is not a practice of Dell. What good would it do me to report these calls (each day I might add)to Dell  if these scammers change their phone number daily, hourly, continuously? I work from home so you cannot imagine how angry it makes me for my cell to ring with a phone number that I do not know. If I were to call Dell on your 800 line to report these scams, You cannot imagine how angry it would make me to wait for God only knows how long to speak to someone about this. I have neither the time or patience for these interruptions or consumption of my time. So, what can and will Dell do about these calls/scammers? On a side note, if some are caught, I would consider it an honor and a gift if I could just spend 5 minutes with one. Justice can be served in under 5 minutes.

  • BobJax

    On the national news the other day, they did a story on NOMOROBO. Check your providers website site. Many encourage its use. It stop robocalls.

    I am with Comcast. On their site they tell now to install Nomorobo. It is simple, but took a while. Once I did what Comcast said to do, it did not seem to work. I called Comcast and escalated. You know it is not working cause Nomorobo keeps calling and says it is not working. After a few calls (late in the evening), I took my number out of the Nomorobo site. The next day I put the number back in Nomorobo and it worked.

    NO MORE ROBO Calls (hooray), except real charities and political ***.

    Anyway I think Comcast took awhile to update my preferences, that is why it did not take immediately. Comcast was great about escalating.

    Check your provider. One catch I use it on a landline, it is free. If you use it on a cell I think it is $5 a month.

  • Mamaelf

    I have gotten phone calls too, and never bought a Dell. I think it's bigger than just Dell, they called my son who own a Thinkpad and uses Linux. They just are crooks, don't blame Dell. And just like the healthcare industry, government, and the newspaper, all it takes is one bad employee to blow millions of people's private info. We had an employee here get into the list of subscribers who had their papers on vacation hold, and sold that list to a gang of thieves who went and robbed hundreds of those addresses. Who's to say Dell, Microsoft, an anyone else doesn't have some bad people working on the inside?

  • cpegaso942740

    I also have received and undetermined amount of computer fix-it- all calls from Indian or Pakistani callers, always with my best interest in mind. Most of the time, if I ask them to lose my number, they hang up, or try and keep talking trying to ignore my interruptions. Trying to copy the number and put it on my blocker phone list doesn't work as either the number is incomplete or just says Out Of Area.

    After getting tired of the calls, being called stupid because I didn't want their service, or trying to get a word in edgewise, I finally lost it, cussed him out and told him not to call back

    . "Sir, you don't have to use that kind of language," he said, very calmly.

    "Well, you people don't seem to take no for an answer so I thought I would try another strategy."

    Don't ask for a supervisor, they will definitely hang up then. After the last call, a couple months ago, they haven't called back yet. I probably have a star by my number and a note, Don't call the as—–." That's fine by me.

  • Bmcarney

    I have been receiving these calls for almost over a year now.  I felt this was a scam and played along with the fool with poor english.  I have told him I'm eating dinner and can't go to my computer now.  I've told him I am having a party and can't go to my computer now.  I've told him I'm sick and throwing up.  I've told him I'm handicapped and I don't have someone to take me to the computer.  I've told him my computer is broke and doesn't turn on.  I've told him my electricity is off from a storm and I can't use my computer.  I've told him my computer is in the repair shop now.  I've told him I have to handup their is an ambulance in my driveway.  Oh my what will I dream up next.  I agree with others this started after I purchase my Dell Computer.  You did his Dell!  .  

  • vflflyer

    Sounds like this is an inside job to me! Pretty sure Dell uses India for sales/tech

  • Hank17

    Another thing to watch out for, especially if you are using the Macafee Security program that Dell offers when you purchase a new computer. I use the computer often to look up many things but I only open things on the internet that have green check marks to show that it is a safe site to go on. Last week there appeared what was a safe site. I went on here and when I closed the page I was on, it said my computer was locked with a virus and I had to call a phone number listed on the screen or all of my information would be deleted and mu computer would become totally useless forever unless I called within the next 5 minutes. Well, I did call and they were what sounded only like Indians as they kept switching me from person to person, all of them had fake American sounding names and said they were from a major computer firm in Massachusetts. The only way to eliminate the virus and use my computer again was to use a credit card (at first they told me they only took debit cards), when I objected to that they switched me to s "supervisor" who told me it was okay if I used a credit card for a $149.99 charge to clean the virus from my computer. They were in my computer for an hour and a half and kept calling me back to tell me they needed more time to fix it because it was a very bad virus. My wife picked up the phone on one of these calls back to me and they told her to go and look at my computer because your husband is a very bad man and he has been doing very bad things on his computer and played a page of porno, that I never look at and found completely disgusting and revolting myself and kept telling her about how bad a man I am and that I spend a lot of time using the computer to watch stuff like this. They were active on my computer for a long time after that and I have no idea what kind of information they might have stolen from it or what they might have added to it, such as additional malware or virus information. I don't know what else to do and am genuinely concerned about ever using the computer again because of this and I have much personal and medical information that is on here. Any suggestions? Thank you

  • UserofDells101

    Sounds like Dell needs to quit outsourcing Tech Support to foreigners.  Even if they are legit you can't hardly understand them and use of Americanized names seems fraudulent.

  • Balrog49

    I get these calls all the time. They make me angry because my wife used to work for an assisted living center and spent a good deal of time and effort trying to help the elderly overcome their technophobia, at least enough to use email and browse the web. I worked in software development and I've also spent a fair amount of time and effort trying to help people take those first, critical baby steps toward using a computer. Needless to say, it's non-technical people are the ones who fall victim to these scumwads.

    I'm totally unbiased but I have to agree that they all sound Indian and have poor English language skills. They have heavy accents and run all their words together making them hard to understand, particularly whoever they claim to represent. Now that I have a way to report these callers, I'll no longer feel as compelled to tell them that they're trash and that they should find a real job and maybe even a tiny bit of self-respect.

    For what it's worth, my primary system is a Dell laptop. I buy broken ones, fix them, make them run as fast as a new computer, and resell them. None of those fakers have ever tried to give me a service tag or any other specific information about my computers.

  • DrBillLemoine

    Buying my new Dell tower at Best Buy, I googled the Norton website to reinstall protective software bought from them. I got an Indian sounding technician who sold me about $600 worth of software and installed it. When the computer locked up with hacking soon after, I reported the charges to my bank which suspended the charges pending fraud investigation. I never paid a penny for that fraudulent stuff and got a legitimate installation from Norton quickly and permanently at far less cost. It was quite an eye opener and use of charge cards from a large bank saved me from disaster. I was suspicious at the first phone call to tech support because of prior credit card fraud and heightened awareness which served me well in the long run.

  • Sean88888888

    I've gotten calls  in the past from "tech support" about my computers (I actually have four Dells, two desktops and two laptops) that I clearly knew were scams since I knew Dell wouldn't be calling me out of the blue.  The last time was probably about six months ago.  But I haven't been answering my phone the last few months due to the merciless bombarding of political calls and I have a pretty clear message on my phone telling, scammers, solicitors and sales people to stop calling me.  Of course they still call, but I think it at least discourages them from leaving messages.

  • Jannedell

    Hello Laura,

    I guess you are the designated trouble shooter for the company, as well as keeping us all sort of calm.

    Like all the others on this forum I am VERY disturbed by what is happening to us all.

    I as well started receiving calls from what they say is DELL SUPPORT, last week and the gentleman ( I call him that loosly ) Sounded Phillepino, also had my service tag number,  my serial number,  my model number,  my full name and where I lived,  and if course my phone number,  the strangest part is that it is my cell number which was what ONLY Dell has, NOT my home number ??? Now how did he have all this information,  especially my very strictly guarded cell number ???

    He knew exactly when I got my computer as well as the last time I had spoken to Dell ???

    I kept quizzing him on information and he had it ALL.

    Now that is plain strange,  and of course he called from an anonymous phone number,  and I repeatedly asked him to call from a published line and I hung up,  he was persistent and this went on for 15 calls one after another,  and he never used a traceable line,  and I did not speak to him again,  I hope he finally gave up.

    He said when we brickyard spoke that I had errors in my software update that Dell had recently installed on my computer,  and that customers were calling in like crazy asking for service,  so he and his team had been ordered to call all customers that had had prior service and help them fix the update errors with him in a few easy steps.

    That's when I told him I wanted him to call me on a# displayed phone line.

    So please just tell us,  what kind of a beach in your information have you really experienced ? Did they get credit card info as well ?

    As a few of the other bloggers had written, obviously there has been a beach as it is ONLY on my Del they are calling,  not on any of my other laptops,  we have a few other machines,  2 HP's and one Apple as well as a Gateway, and NO calls from any of their tech people ever or anyone trying to act as one.

    Please just give us all the real story OK,  it will be greatly appreciated.

    Warmest Regards.   Jan.

  • tallyrand

    I haven't myself, but two friends have fallen prey to this scam, resulting in a lot of inconvenience and expense. It is quite pernicious. Write your congress person and demand severe punishment for cyber crime and fraud.

  • kayatbucks

    This was posted in 10/15, how come I only got the email today? I was the victim of a scam but by computer, not by phone. Danger, error…., you must contact Microsoft Technician immediately…I fell for it and let them on my computer for an hour and finally managed to end it – looked up Microsoft #, called them & no such # as the one I called. Then called Dell and was on for 3 hours trying to fix what they did. It was funny since the things they said sounded just like the fake one which  makes me think, they were probably trained service technicians going rogue. I think the solution is that Dell & Microsoft need to have a store where you can take your computer and not trust some call center in India that you can barely understand – like Apple's genius bar.

  • hughdbrown

    You said this: "But, cybercriminals are tricky. They do their homework and learn what they can about you or work hard to gain your trust. They may even tell you things about your computer that you think only a legitimate vendor would know. This is a key element to social engineering – a non-technical method cybercriminals use to trick people into loading malware on their systems or revealing credit card information."

    Every time I have heard from these scammers, I have concluded that Dell's systems have been compromised. Not that the scammers have "done their homework" — that Dell's customer databases are available to hackers.

    Why do I say that? They had my computer's service tag, my computer's model, my name, and my cell phone number. These four pieces of information are known only to Dell, and they started only after returning a laptop to Dell for repairs. Public pieces like this are great, but you need to clean up your systems.

  • ColinBarnhorst

    I often tell the caller (usually with a heavy accent) who purports to be from the "Windows Department" that I don't use Windows.  That I have a Mac or use Linux.  One caller said that "We have Mac stuff too."  But one  argued with me that his information showed that I "used my Windows computer on Friday."  The take-away from that was that the crooks purchase lists compiled from internet usage.  

    One gave up on me by calling me an "A**hole."  Another said he was going to shut down my computer.  Its a bit of a game I play with them when the mood strikes me.  I have received dozens of the fake calls.  Some suggesting they are from the "Windows Department" and some "we are calling about your Windows computer."  

  • rsi 2

    I have received numerous calls from this type of scam but its so obvious calls are not from Dell .I listened to the guy who had an Indian accent for few minutes and then I asked him if people really fell for this type of scam …..he said '' you would be surprised ''.  I still get the calls from ''unknown callers '' on landline number that i used to register with dell . i just don't answer anymore.

  • auxcom753

    these calls started with me about 5 months ago… i call you and you just blew me off… ihave lost all respect for dell and are having a tough time since i fell for the scam and now i hve a boat anchor instead of a laptop since my laptop was out of warranty . imhave purchased a pc , many laptops , and four tablets along with other things from you. in fase you want to verify this my name i edward l kinnard

  • nightshine

    My husband, who is technologically challenged, let one of these scammers have control of his computer.  A few weeks later he was having problems and I wanted to use the Norton's I had installed to  work on his computer.  Well, all traces of it were gone!  I had to reinstall the program and run it from scratch to "fix" whatever this guy did.  Fortunately, my husband does not have any financial data on his computer.

    So then the guy calls me to ask why I am not using Service tag number _____.  This is a computer that I have in my home that I have not used in several years.  

    These scammers are really slick.  

    I have deterred these calls by threatening to call the FBI and let them place a wire tap on my phone to trace where the call is coming from.  I have not received a call in quite a while.

    I commend Dell in creating the form though, as I called them after I received the call after my husband's fiasco by the number that showed in the caller ID.  It was indeed a Dell phone number.  When I got to a tech support guy, they told me what the article states: They don't cold call people like this.

    Thanks Dell for looking out for us.  I will remain a loyal customer.

  • DellBoy10234

    I check the Caller ID display before I answer.  If it says, "No CallerID", or a number I don't recognize,  I don't even bother.  They almost ALWAYS hang up when my "not here" message is played.  If it  turns out to be legitimate, they will leave a message unless I immediately pick up the phone.  But it's funny how I see the same caller call back again, and again, and………

  • DELL-Laura

    @hughdbrown, @Jannedell, @auxcom753 and other commenters – I understand your frustration and I also share it. These scammers erode our customers' trust in us and that is why we take them very seriously. We have no indication that customer information used in the scams was obtained through an external attack. However, we are not dismissing the issue. We have assembled a team of experts that are focused on investigating it. More on that can be found in this post from our Chief Security Officer: en.community.dell.com/…/dell-phone-tech-support-scams Many thanks to all of you who have taken the time to complete the form at dell.com/reportphonescams or call us at 866-453-1742 to share details of your interaction. That information goes directly to our team that is focused on investigating phone scams and pursuing action against those who seek to defraud our customers.

  • stevepow

    I have had the same sort of call where they knew my service tag#, computer model#, my name, etc – seemed almost convincing except the nonsense about them detecting an issue on my computer.

    Clearly DELL has been breached and customer data is in the hands of these scammers – it is not "maybe", it is certainly.  How, why?  Well, does DELL have customer support centers in foreign countries?  Not hard to connect the dots.

    However, I don't get many of the calls anymore – I am using a free call blocking service call nomorobo.com – same blacklisting service that Ooma uses.  It blocks most of these calls and if one gets through, it is easy to report and add to the blacklist.  If your phone service supports it, highly recommended.

    When they do call, I have a number of amusing games to play with them. 🙂

  • Social.awareness

    I have the same experience as CyberGuy23. I believe that people working for Dell are partly the reason why extremely sensitive information are passed on to lelemarketers. They call from overseas and may not even visited the US because stores like Bestbuy are too foreign to them. I have extensively travelled to South and Southeast Asia and I can detect the slightest English accent in these locations, and true- very Indian accent.

    They have information on my computer, my email address, etc. which they say the reason they call is due to expiring licenses… and yet they don't represent Dell. Because of these instances I tend to believe that Dell is selling information to other companies or that it is simply an inside job. SO DELL TECHNICAL/SECURITY SUPPORT: make sure you are not taking advantage of your customers, or that necessary precautionary measures are put in place to ensure your IT people are not kicking you in the ***!!!

  • kay71

    About 10 minutes after reading the email from dell about phone scams, including this page, and other links from the email, I got one of those popup windows claiming that microsoft essentials (which I am not using on this (desktop) pc) had detected and problem, and they needed me to call them right away or my computer would locked down. I had to use task manager to close the popup window, and then I rebooted, and the problem has not returned.   Maybe it was just a coincidence that this happened so soon after visiting the dell site, ( this desktop is NOT a DELL computer), but it seems weird it happened so soon after reading the information in the Dell email and on the dell site.  

  • bduboff

    Ugh … this has been going on for years with scammers having all sorts of Dell specific details. I'm a long time customer having bought multiple computers. The fact that you have "assembled a team of experts that are focused on investigating it" NOW is completely underwhelming. I've called Dell in the past regarding this issue and got nothing … no satisfaction, no insight, no explanation – in fact, what I got was mostly a "gosh golly we're really surprised to hear about this". I'm glad you're sending out an email about this but honestly is too little too late – Dell should be much more proactive about communicating this problem to it's customers with regular and on-going communications stressing safety, security and reinforcing "Dell will never call you!!!!" I realize you have no control over the insane criminals but they are impacting your business reputation and as far as I'm concerned you've done virtually nothing to address it for years. Get it together dell.

  • GKFORD

    This has been going on over 3 years for me, they say they are calling from Windows and my dell computer is causing problems. This started shortly after I registered a new dell.  I no longer have that computer here, I gave it to my son a couple years ago.  What is very strange is, I have an old no name computer that I put together years ago and every time I turn it on, within 24 hours I get a call from them telling me my dell computer is causing windows problem.  This will go on for several days,  I don't use the computer anymore but every now and then I turn it on just to see if they are going to call.  Sure enough they call.  I can't hardly understand what they are saying, I make them repeat everything at least 3 times. Usually they become frustrated and hang up but sometimes we get into some real name calling arguments.  When I start talking about their mother, that usually ends the conversation and the phone calls until the next time I turn it on.  I have no doubt that this started when I bought and registered that new dell.  Dell really needs to get to the bottom of this and get it stopped before they lose all their customers.  I feel sorry for the dell owners who don't know and understand what is happening.  

  • BobJax

    You guys are so out of date. Check your provider. They offer nomorobo to block robocalls.

  • S_Man86

    I received a call from someone purporting to be from Dell Support because "my computer was sending an error message" to them.  They wanted me to go to my computer and they would walk me through the process. Since I am cautious of anyone calling to offer me help with a problem that I am not aware.  I was shocked to learn that the caller knew the Service Tag Number for my device as well as my name and the telephone number that I used to contact Dell.  I told that caller that I was traveling and did not have my computer with me at the moment but would call them back when I was near my computer.  After concluding the call, I contacted Dell's online number to confirm my suspicion.  I completed Dell's online fraud questionnaire.  I am concerned that the fraudsters has information that I presumed only Dell has about my device and my contact information.  This looks like some type of breach has occurred at Dell as I am not the only person having this experience.  I am very disappointed with this issue and concerned that Dell has not been able to identify any breach. The consistency of the fraud indicates that data has leaked somehow and the common factor is information related to Dell.  I purchased my device from Dell in November 2015.

  • Opiedoc

    I have also been harassed by these phone scammers, numerous times over the past three months. I have recently blocked the numbers they are calling from which, coincidentally, show up on caller-id as Dell customer support numbers.  I have gotten to the point where if a technician at Dell helps me and asks if he can call me back I have to decline him due to being so suspicious.  

    Now I have a few questions for Dell:

    1.  WHY DIDN'T YOU LET YOUR CUSTOMERS KNOW ABOUT THIS PROBLEM SOONER??  Blog post, email, postal mail, news media, social media, bill boards…something??

    2.  Why is impossible to talk someone to talk to someone at Dell headquarters?  I have been a loyal Dell customer since 2002 and have spent nearly $10,000 at dell.com.  I think we all deserve to speak with someone in "the ivory tower" and not have to worry about a language barrier to get our point across when we have a question or complaint.

    3.  To alleviate further suspicion, has Dell thought to bring technical support back into the US since the scammers seem to have the same Indian accent as the support technicians?

    4.  How does Dell know that the technical support team is not feeding these scammers with vital customer information?

    I'm at a point where my next computer purchase will be from Apple.

  • pk000

    Received a similar call from these guys two days ago. The guy was able to pronounce my name perfectly, and being an Indian-American, I think he was calling from India. Told him straight away that his trying to have me log in to a server sounded like a scam. He hung up.

    Another gentleman with the same name Edward called again today. Similar story – he wanted to give me a refund for my extended warranty and wanted me to connect to the server. He hung up when I challenged him on the necessity to connect to a server.

    Most importantly, I recorded today's conversation. Just told that to a dell rep on 866-453-1742.  Waiting to see if Dell can leverage this recording in any way to get to these *********s.

  • tim1963

    Some say don't blame Dell, now that is stupid. They have all my Dell info, Dell screwed up and didn't even bother to tell us. No they didn't get me, but I am still *** they call every other day, I deleted my credit card from my Dell account, paid it off and closed, I worry/assume they got that too. Never again Dell, no say sales for you, from me ever again. It is not that it happened, it is that you behaved so secretly, without any care for the safety of your customers. I fart in your general direction, go to ***, Dell.