Crooks are always on the lookout for opportunities to trick potential victims into forking over some of their hard-earned cash. One widespread scam that targets users of popular services is this devious ploy that tricks people into believing that they have been hacked.
And with nearly 100 million subscribers worldwide, Netflix is one of the most popular online services around. With these kinds of subscriber numbers and especially with the planned price increase next month, there will always be customers looking for technical help.
But look out! Is that number you're dialing really for Netflix?
Latest Netflix scam
According to a warning from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), fake Netflix support phone numbers are sprouting up when people do an online search for the service's customer support numbers.
When you call one of these bogus numbers, someone who claims to be a Netflix representative picks up the call. But surprise, surprise, they are actually scammers who want to trick you into giving them remote access to your computer.
Here are some of the results when we Google searched for "Netflix Customer Service" results. Confusing, isn't it?
This is similar to the Facebook customer support scam we warned you about earlier.
In this latest version of the scam, subscribers are being told that a dozen people worldwide have gained access to the victim's Netflix account. The "representative" then says that they can verify that your account has been hacked by granting them remote access to your computer.
Uh oh, huge red flag! If you do grant them access, it's game over. These scammers can install whatever they please on your computer, including malware that can spy on you, record all your keystrokes, and steal your passwords and banking information.
According to the BBB, the scam's modus operandi is to scare victims into buying expensive but worthless computer software that will supposedly fix Netflix security flaws and protect them from hacks.
"The expensive software – victims report paying between $200 and $900 – will do nothing to fix your Netflix account, which was never hacked in the first place," the BBB explains. We always warn you about garden-variety tech support scams like this and they're fairly easy to spot.
Note: It's not just Netflix support scams that are going around. Click here to read about a Netflix phishing scam that can drain your bank accounts.
How to contact Netflix
And it's not just Netflix subscribers who are being targeted. Tech support scams are happening across all popular services like Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, and Amazon so be extra vigilant.
While there is an actual Netflix customer support number you can call (according to Netflix's official Help Center, the number is 866-579-7172), be extremely careful when searching for customer service numbers online.
Scammers are becoming extremely savvy with masking Google's search results so always double-check the webpage's address. When in doubt, you can always find the real support phone number on your bill.
This vigilante pulled a perfect prank on phone scammers
Sick and tired of phone scammers? Click here to read about this tech vigilante who found an ingenious way to turn the tables against them!