Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi and the Federal Trade Commission filed two complaints against multiple companies operating “multi-million dollar schemes to sell tech support services to consumers nationwide,” according to a news release by the State Attorney General’s office.
According to Bondi and the FTC, the first complaint alleges that Inbound Call Experts LLC, Super PC Support, and related entities used a technical support scam to capitalize on consumers’ fears of viruses, malware, and other security threats to their computers. The companies’ sales totaled more than $100 million.
The second complaint alleges that Vast Tech Support, LLC and related entities used online advertisements and telephone calls to convince consumers to run scans on their computers to detect errors. According to the investigation, the defendants ran scans on consumers’ computers and then charged for repairs when the computers actually had no performance problems. Consumers paid up to $500 for repairs in addition to other charges for software. This scheme has resulted in more than $22 million in consumer expenditures.
Already, the Court has granted a temporary injunction preventing the businesses from making any false or misleading statements to induce a person to pay for goods or services, and from charging any consumer for the purchase of specific products. The injunction also mandated suspension of the businesses’ websites, freezing of corporate assets, and appointment of a receiver.
The FTC in its news release noted that the cases mark the third action by the FTC against the operators of computer repair scams, including an enforcement sweep of cases in 2011 and an action brought by the FTC earlier this year against a New York-based scammer.
Continue to follow the Consumer Financial Services Law Monitor for periodic updates on this and other related matters.