#1 way to spot a scam: It works every time

A reader has a question about some phone calls she received recently:

“Last week I received about 10 calls saying it was Molly from Apple and my cloud app had been hacked (or something like this) I don’t use the cloud. So do you think this was a legitimate call or another scam? I just kept hanging up(don’t have caller id). Also, I heard that we could be compromised on our routers?? Is that true too? I will go in and try to change the password.”

Here’s my #1 hard and fast rule: if they call you, it’s a scam. Nobody is going to call you with that kind of an alert. And nobody is going to call you 10 times. Apple is never, ever, ever, ever going to call you unless you’ve called them to set something up with the Apple store. Microsoft is never, ever, ever going to call you unless you’ve called their customer support and made a specific appointment to hear from them. Google is never, ever, ever going to call you. No one is ever, ever going to cold call anyone to tell them there’s an issue with their phone or their security software.


If they call you — assume it’s a big, fat scam. PERIOD. End of story!

I’m not clear on what made you suspect your router was compromised. Is it something they said during the call? No one’s going to call you and tell you that either. If a phone call made you concerned that your router security had been compromised, don’t be. These are just random liars telling random lies and hoping that someone is fooled into believing them.

If there’s something else making you think there’s an issue with your router, email me and I’ll see if I can’t help you out.

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