Posted by: David Harley | July 16, 2015

iOS Support Scams

A new blog by Graham Cluley for Intego actually has some points in common with my most recent blog here (which also involved pop-ups misused by support scammers, particularly in the context of Safari). However, Graham’s article is about iOS, whereas mine related to questions asked regarding OS X and Safari (citing advice from Thomas Reed that also addressed other browsers).

The Intego blog takes as a starting point an article in the Telegraph by  that explains how:

Users are reporting fake crash reports demanding payment in order to fix their Apple devices

These variations of the scam continue the trend away from direct cold-calling and towards tricking the victim into initiating the phone conversation with ‘iOS crash reports’ requiring the victim to call ‘Apple technical support’ at a number given in the pop-up message.

The Telegraph article focuses on reports from the UK, but Graham has found reports from North America  going back to last September if not earlier.

According to a variety of resources, this will get rid of a persistent pop-up of this type:

  • Put the device into Airplane mode.
  • Go to Settings > Safari> Clear History and Website Data.
  • Reopen Safari. Turn off Airplane mode.

Graham also offers a quick guide to blocking pop-ups proactively. Apple suggests a number of proactive measures worth considering. But the first thing to remember is not to ring that number.

I maintain a collection of links to tech support scam information on the AVIEN blog.

David Harley

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