FBI cautions people to be on guard, as tech scams spike in Arizona

FBI officials are stressing on Tuesday that no legitimate tech support company will reach out to you and cold call you to offer services.

The warning comes, as FBI officials say tech support scams are spiking in Arizona.

"I couldn't believe I was scammed," said Rosalinda of Surprise, in a phone interview. "I felt foolish. I really did."

The tech scam that happened to Rosalinda a year ago is happening to so many others, the FBI Phoenix Office is issuing a warning to people about it.

"The scam has to do with fraudsters claiming to be tech support for computers," said FBI Supervisory Special Agent Martin Hellmer.

Hellmer says losses due to tech support scam increased 263% in Arizona in 2017. These scammers contact you by phone or even over the internet, claiming that something is wrong with your computer that they can fix. Rosalinda says she gave the scammers access to her computer, because they said they needed it to fix her firewall and help it run faster.

"People should not give unknown unidentified people remote access to their computers, because they do have access, then they can do a lot of different things," said Hellmer.

Rosalinda said she finally called a tech group from an electronics store to look at her computer

"I told them what was happening, and at that point it, was over $8,000 that they had on my credit card and he said 'you've been scammed,'" said Rosalinda.

Thankfully for Rosalinda, her credit card was impacted and she said her credit card company has reimbursed her. Rosalinda now says she will only have her computer serviced in person, and she said she doesn't answer the phone anymore if it's a number she does not recognize.

FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center