In needing to contact HP for some technical support, I googled for the phone number and got the 1-866-527-1163 come up, so called it for support. In calling it was the beginning of a negative experience which frauded me out of monies from my visa due to pressure tactics and dishonesty of a company pretending to be someone they were not and procuring monies for something I had warrenty for.
At the beginning of the call, I asked if it was HP as the lady who answered the phone mumbled...after which she answered yes. I began to speak about my warrenty and wanting verification of such to which her response was to be short with me asking me if I wanted her help and consistently asking what the problem was as she wanted to help me with it.
I let her gain remote access to my computer as she said she was HP, had been listed on the internet as HP technical support and appeared to want to help me. Shortly after gaining access, she started telling me I had a serious hacker that needed to be dealt with and that if I did not let her help me that I could lose all of my important personal information and allow the hacker to gain acccess to it. Then started being informed that there would be a charge for such, in which my response was questioning why my warrenty did not cover such. Her response which did not address or was honest was that they only covered hardware on my computer and that this was a software problem(again pretending to be HP).
She started pressuring me telling me that the hacker would know she was putting security on my computer and then act faster to get it off my computer and steal banking and credit information had I used online banking etc. I told her I was scared and did not know what to do, although was not working and could not afford such and still did not understand why my warrenty did not cover such. Then came a time pressure tactic along with her repeat speach that my warrenty did not cover software issues and that I was under serious attack and if I did not enter my visa information into the computer and fast(she was remotely in my computer as of course I would let HP in it to help me), that she could not hold the hacker off and the whole process of what she had done to block them and then fix it so the hacker could not get it after would be prevented as it was so time sensitive.
Afraid, with pressure and given these circumstances of fearing someone was going to be able to get my credit and all personal information(someone who was in the process of trying to aggressively procure such from my computer already and would be more aggressive should the process not be followed through on and my computer left back open and vulnerable)...I typed in my visa number so she could protect me from the hacker.
Then came a man who took over remote access and she told me I would be given a call when he was done securing my computer. Meanwhile the issue I was calling about was not being addressed due to this "major hacking issue" and special circumstances of why this service was not covered under warrenty being charged to my credit card. A charge I could not affford, although being stolen from would have been worse as would not having a computer.
After about an hour, the man said he was done on remote access. At that time I reiterated the issue I was calling about and asked him to call me so that we could communicate on the phone while addressing it. In speaking on the phone, I agiain questioned him as to why this service was not covered under my warrenty and if he could please give me contact information as to who to speak to about it as it did not make sense to me.
All of a sudden the lady was back on the phone as apparently he did not want to speak with me as I was asking too many questions?!?!?! Last thing the man said to me was that they dealt with many companies(yet they were supposed to be HP and if they were a seperate company helping people who were no longer under warrenty, could say so when a customer shared they were still under stuch...if they were legitimate that is). Money had already been removed off credit card by this time according to bank. The lady was evasive in answering and then became somewhat angry with me telling me she had expalined it before and again saying my warrenty did not cover software isssues.
Under the pressure of the supposed hacking I felt I had no choice but to let her "fix" the issue or experience theft or a breakdown of my computer by the supposed "hacker". I felt guilty and thanked her for preventing that and helping stop that from happening to me, as to the gentleman who "helped" as well. She then told me that had I not allowed them to do so, my computer screen could have blown up on me. I requested the case # as that is what HP gives you at the end of each call and she and he told me I did not need to write anything down and that there was not a reference #.
Right after getting off the phone, I noticed the issue I had called about had not been fixed. So called HP back and when expaining my concerns about the previous call to the gentleman I got and that on top of all of the above had not had the issue I called in about addressed and again did not understand why the supposed "serious hacking issue" was not covered under my warrenty.
The gentleman that I was speaking from the real HP told me that "they" were the hackers and to call my bank and take precautionary measures and while I had the initial issue to still deal with, to call back another time to address such as stopping any actions they may take was priority.
Called bank and cancelled debit cards, visa and let them know about this fraud. Spent several more hours on the phone when waking after a few hours with an HP case manager and the bank again. HP case manager told me I had been the victem of fraud. Apparently his next call was about the same company representing themselves as HP support commiting fraud to another customer and assured me that the only way I would have been able to tell was had I had his training.
It has been a nightmare of the last three days and all of my banking has not be set back up, as well as challenges with dealing with bank as there is fraud all over my account and my health does not allow me to be out and about easily as well as caused me extreme exhaustion and exacerbation of health symptoms from the stress.
My expectation is that my bank reverses the charges as I do not see why this company should make money off me through their fraud sceme before being shut down. On top of such, I am at a loss as to how a company can operate as such and be set up to appear legitimate coming up onn google as pretending to be a legitimate company of which they are not and using that name to fraud customers under warrenty with tactics only a trained criminal could have skills to do.
I hope this message helps others from being scammed and while I know there have been some before me and some after, do hope that google or the powers that be are able to shut it down before more victems fall prey. I see on this board that they have represented themselves and come up in search engines as being other legitimate support for reputable companies such as Norton in the past.
Had no idea anyone could be this good and appear so legitimate, as well as being so dishonest and take advantage of as well as get away with it and then others as well as previous. Hope these people get caught red handed and go to jail before being able to cover their tracks and tuck stolen monies away. It is not o.k. and I am still amazed at their seriousness, presssure and cockyness towards us supposed customers on the phone as though we are doing something wrong and they will not help or are losing patience to help in a serious situation that we need such from them unless we give them our credit card despite at least in my case...still having warrenty on my computer while being left to feel afraid of computer being hacked and all personal information including banking being at risk momentarily.
They are not new if searched on the internet as a scam and seem to be involved with many now and in the past. I feel so taken advantage of and have been while I know someone ignorant would ask and think it is my fault because I gave my credit card intomation. First of all they said they were HP and were listed as such on google and secondly apparently minutes away from the supposed hacker gettting into and stealing the information that apparently it would see them trying to block them from, so therefore would be more aggressive if I did not move foreward. Scam scam scam. No other word for it and I hope and expect any and every lgeitimate bank reverse charges, so as not to be part of such and enable their custtomers to be taken advantage of in that way.
Good luck and I do hope people read this and it helps prevent fraud to others....