Scammed by Live Network Help? Here's What to Do

Dennis Faas's picture

Infopackets Reader Gina S. writes:

" Dear Dennis,

Last week, I was using my PC when suddenly a red screen appeared, stating that my 'PC ran into a problem' and to call 1-657-233-9938 to speak to Microsoft. I tried to close the window but the screen was locked. That's when I called the number and spoke to a person with a very thick Indian accent. I later discovered that the company name was Live Network Help (livenetworkhelp.com / 1-855-295-0715 / 855-500-0425), which was different than the phone number on the red screen virus alert. At any rate - after about 10 minutes on the phone, the technician took control of my PC and proceeded to tell me that my IP address was not encrypted and it would cost $800 to fix the problem. I reluctantly paid half of the amount to regain control of my PC, and promised I will pay the rest in a few days. I have since come across your article on Easy Net Experts and realize I've been scammed. I am scared to death they will delete all my files or lock me out of my PC if I don't pay the remainder (as you mentioned in your previous article) - plus, they still have access to my PC and my financial information! Can you PLEASE help!? "

My response:

I called Gina on the phone to discuss the issue, then asked if she would be comfortable in having me examine the issue using my remote desktop support service. She agreed. Below I will discuss my findings.

Live Network Help = Fake Tech Support

For the record -

Any time you receive an alert that "something is wrong" with your PC and that you need to call a 1-800 number to "fix" the "problem" - it's a scam!

This scam follows the exact same pattern that is currently being rolled out by the same idiots as Net PC Experts (netpcexperts.com) and Easy Network Experts (easynetexperts.com), which are undoubtedly the same group of cyber criminals as PC Network Experts and 10 other fake company names associated with this scam as I've reported on over the last 6 years. These are also more than likely the same scammers that are responsible for sending out fake PayPal emails (invoices) - also known as the PayPal tech support scam.

According to GoDaddy's whois record, livenetworkhelp.com was registered on January 8, 2020 - just 17 days ago at the time of writing. The domain is registered in New Delhi, India, yet the livenetworkhelp.com website "claims" they are operating out of 1023 Independence Blvd, Virginia Beach, VA 23462, United States.

Question: What do you get when you mix multiple 1-800 numbers, a website registered in India, and a US-based address listed on their website?

Answer: fake tech support by Indian scammers!

Here's What Happens When You Let Cyber Criminals Into Your Machine

Based on my experience in dealing with this scam over the past 6 years, it goes WAY deeper than losing $800 for fake technical support.

Here's what really happens:

  1. When you let scammers into your machine, they will tie you on the phone for as long as possible, claiming that they are "examining the problem".
     
  2. During this time they may switch you between "departments" and "agents". This is meant to stall you. During this time, scammers are remotely rifling through your PC, looking for financial information, including tax and bank statements, passwords, and more. They will then use this information to scare you, stating that "hackers have this information", and/or they will use the info to drain your bank accounts, or to scam you again in the future unbeknownst to you.
     
  3. At the same time, they will also deploy multiple remote access backdoors on your PC, so they can get back into your system whenever they want.

    The remote access backdoors will allow them to:

    a) connect to your PC later so that they can monitor your activity, plant and deploy malware on the machine, record your keystrokes, and gain access to other financial institutions.

    b) propagate more scams remotely. In this case they will upload another "virus" to your machine, then have it display a scary message and prompt you to call another 1-800 number to "fix" the "problem". This "new problem" won't be covered by your initiate fake contract, and you'll be paying substantially more for this new, fake costly "fix".

    c) the remote access also guarantees that you will make payment to the scammers. If you don't pay up, they will delete all your files or lock you out of the machine. This has already happened to many of my clients!
     
  4. All of the above will repeat indefinitely until the bank accounts are drained and/or the victim wises up.

Scammed by Live Network Help? Here's What to Do

If you let the scammers in your machine, here's what you need to do:

  1. Power down your PC and don't use it until it's been properly cleaned. When the machine is off, they can't connect to it.

    Please note that you are free to take the PC where you like to get fixed, but please be advised that most computer places / tech savvy people have absolutely no clue where to look to undo the damage caused by the scammers. The scammers don't make it easy to remove their remote access backdoors on purpose because they will do everything in their power to get your money. If the company you take it to misses only one remote access backdoor, you will be no better off and in a world of unending hurt!

    Case in point: a client of mine took his machine to Best Buy because he already paid for a yearly subscription to the Geek Squad and it wouldn't cost him anything extra to have them "fix" it. I advised him against this decision. When he got the machine back, he decided to hire me to look at it. I quickly discovered that Geek Squad missed 5 remote access backdoors, plus they didn't remove the malware on his machine. I showed my findings (with proof) to the client and he was furious! He was no better off than before he gave them his machine. You have been warned!

    On the other hand, I am a senior systems administrator (view my resume here) and have been dealing with this scam for over 6 years and know exactly where to look and undo the damage - contact me here. To date I have found close to 20 remote access backdoors and variants used by the scammers. I can also provide photographic evidence that I am who I say I am if you need it in case you are skeptical.
     
  2. If you hire me: when the machine is cleaned, I will outline a plan to reclaim your funds. If you don't hire me: you won't receive this service.

    Timing on this is critical, and also depends on how you paid the scammers. For example, if you paid by credit card, this should be easily reversible - though it also depends on how you go about claiming fraud. If you do it the wrong way, you won't get your money back or the money will be tied up "pending review" without any guarantees. I have a very high success rate in getting my clients' money back - so please wait until you've spoken to me about this before you call the bank or credit card company. Trust me on this, or you will be making a costly mistake.
     
  3. Don't answer the phone when the scammers call you back - and believe me, they will!

    The scammers like to do fake follow up call(s) to make sure you're happy with their fake technical support services. This is all part of the illusion to make you feel like you've been in contact with a legitimate tech support firm. Here's the kicker: if you're not happy with their services, they will try to convince you to let them back in the machine. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD YOU DO THIS. They are betting on the fact that you won't be happy with their fake tech support, and will attempt to initiate a reverse refund scam. This happened to one of my clients and she lost an eye-watering $20,000 dollars! This is NO JOKE.
     
  4. CRITICAL: As I mentioned above - please talk to me prior to calling the credit card / bank company. I have 6 years of experience with this and if you tell them the wrong thing, you will either not get your money back at all, or they will hold your money in purgatory "pending a review" with no guarantee, as I've already pointed out.

    Also, critically important: if you attempt to reverse the charge prior to having the machine cleaned AND the scammers find out you did this, the scammers will seek retribution (punishment) by deleting all your files / lock you out of the machine / make it so your Internet stops working. This can be a costly fix. Ideally you should contact me first, have me remove the remote access backdoors, then proceed with reclaiming funds - otherwise you will be in a world of hurt with the possibility of not getting any of your money back. You have been warned!

    Consultation with me is free (up to 15 minutes) on the phone - click here to email me now and leave your phone number. I promise to call you back ASAP after 1 PM EST typically as I am on the midnight shift. I can also provide evidence that I am who I say I am if you need it.

Feeling Overwhelmed? I'm Here to Help

If you're reading this right now and you've been scammed by Live Network Help, don't worry - you're not alone. I have been helping clients with this scam for over 6 years and can help you recover your funds, make your machine safe to use, and advise you on any concerns you may have. If you need help, simply send me a message briefly describing the issue. Don't forget to include your phone number and I'll email or call you back as soon as possible. I can also provide evidence that I am who I say I am if you need it.

"How do I know you're Not a Scammer, too?"

I've been publishing since 2001 and have written 6 books on MS Windows, Internet and Security. I get emails all the time about this scam; some people even ask me "How do I know you're not a scammer, too?" My response to this is that you can read my articles I've published over the last few years and also review my resume. Based on that, you should be able to understand that I am in fact legitimate, compassionate, and am more than willing to lend a hand - simply contact me, briefly describing the issue and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

About the author: Dennis Faas

Dennis Faas is the owner and operator of Infopackets.com. With over 30 years of computing experience, Dennis' areas of expertise are a broad range and include PC hardware, Microsoft Windows, Linux, network administration, and virtualization. Dennis holds a Bachelors degree in Computer Science (1999) and has authored 6 books on the topics of MS Windows and PC Security. If you like the advice you received on this page, please up-vote / Like this page and share it with friends. For technical support inquiries, Dennis can be reached via Live chat online this site using the Zopim Chat service (currently located at the bottom left of the screen); optionally, you can contact Dennis through the website contact form.

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