“Print Error” Solution Scam Rises in UK

Scammers are blackmailing users with the lure of offering “Print Error” solution, according to WirthConsulting.org.

As reported by Leamington Observer, the swindlers post fake advertisements online on search engines or social media websites with printer helpline claiming to help users experiencing printer problem of receiving “printer error” message. When the users contact the swindlers and allow them to remote access to their PCs, the swindlers take control of the computers and steal information or demand money to hand back control.

“Tens of thousands of users are falling victim to the con, which begin when they ask for help with a printer error,” quoting U.K. Trading Standards Officers.

The scammers are reportedly to claim to have links with well-known computer and printer brands. They tried to charge a victim UK£700 (about US$870.87) in one case. Leamington Observer reports that another user was asked to pay UK£200 (about US$248.82) for correcting the so-called corrupted online identity which has also caused their passwords to be stolen.

Mike Andrews, lead co-ordinator of the U.K.’s National Trading Standards eCrime team, “While victims expect they will receive help with their printer problems, they have in fact been lured into a trap, and find themselves at risk of losing money or important personal information and also have their computer security compromised.”

More than 32,000 cases of such computer service fraud have happened in 2016, with a 47% increase since 2014.

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