Nearly 58,000 people will receive refunds for alleged scammers from Apple and Microsoft who believe their computers are infected with viruses and malware,media reported. The FTC and Connecticut and Pennsylvania say a scam called Click4Support uses search engine ads and pop-ups to trick users into believing their computers have been compromised.
The site then directs victims to call and purchase technical support services they don’t need — a typical practice for common technical support scams.
However, this scam seems to have worked particularly well. FTC records show that Click4Support fraudsters defrauded victims of more than $17 million from victims posing as representatives of big technology companies such as Apple and Microsoft, who charged them for support services that were virtually useless and not needed.
Now, the FTC will offer nearly 58,000 refunds to those used by fraudsters, an average of about $30 each, most of which will be paid through PayPal, but some may receive checks.
According to a dedicated refund page, the FTC will issue 147 checks, but the vast majority will be paid through PayPal. People who accept PayPal payments have a 30-day limit, while checks have a 60-day limit.
In addition, the FTC warned potential refund recipients that they would pretend to be refunding them, but the FTC would never ask anyone to pay or provide account information to cash the refund check.