A reader wrote in a panic:  “I am not able to log into Facebook. They say it is malware and want to take control of my computer to fix it. I told them no. What should I do? I am so upset.”

I contacted the reader wanting to know just who told her it was malware and that they wanted to take control of her computer. She wrote back that she had contacted Facebook by phone and their representative told her this.

That didn’t ring true at all. Facebook customer support is handled online. I’ve never heard of Facebook support wanting to remote into anyone’s PC. To me, it simply sounded like she was having a password issue. I asked where she found the number and she said that she looked it up online.

So I did a quick search for “Facebook phone number.”  Here are the results I got.

facebook-support-number

The trouble is that those two top results are not for Facebook’s phone number. The top one is an ad that someone has paid to have placed there. It’s not Facebook, but rather a company that promises to provide Facebook customer support…for a price.

No company can do anything more with your Facebook account that you can. They can’t reset your password or get you into an account you’ve been locked out of. Only Facebook can do that.

Click through to the site and you see that their tech support offers free diagnostics and will then help you with their support plans that start at $69.99.

facebook-support-number-price

I’m willing to bet that they suggest everyone needs a malware scan. Do not fall for fake search results like this. Facebook is not the only company that fake support providers imitate online.

I told you last week that Bing was banning ads from companies like this who aren’t actually affiliated with the sites or products they claim to represent. Google should certainly consider doing the same.

After relaying this information to our reader, she wrote back to say that she was now able to log in without using tech support or a password reset. So in all likelihood, it was as simple as a mis-typed password. Had she fallen for this scam, she could have been out hundred of dollars and who knows what these people would have done had they been allowed to remote into her PC.

~ Cynthia