If you are a customer of Best Buy, you may have heard of their tech support service called Geek Squad. Geek Squad is a team of experts who can help you with various issues related to your devices, accounts, or applications. However, scammers are also aware of this service and use it to trick unsuspecting people into giving them money or personal information. This is known as the Geek Squad scam.
There are different types of Geek Squad scams, but they all have one thing in common: they involve someone contacting you pretending to be from Geek Squad and asking you to do something that benefits them. Here are some of the most common Geek Squad scams and how to avoid them:
In this scam, you receive an email or a text message that claims you have been or will be charged a large amount of money to renew your Geek Squad membership. The message urges you to call a phone number within 24 hours if you want to dispute the charge or cancel your membership. If you call the number, the scammer may ask for your bank account information, credit card details, or remote access to your computer. They may also try to sell you fake or unnecessary services.
To avoid this scam, do not call the number in the message. Instead, contact Geek Squad directly using a phone number you know is real, such as the one on their official website or your receipt. You can also check your bank account or credit card statement for any unauthorized transactions and report them to your financial institution.
Security support scam
In this scam, you receive a phone call from someone who claims to be from Geek Squad and says they have detected a security issue with your computer or device. They may say that your device is infected with malware, hacked, or compromised in some way. They offer to fix the problem for you if you give them remote access to your device or pay them a fee. If you agree, they may install malicious software on your device, steal your personal information, or charge you for bogus services.
To avoid this scam, do not trust unsolicited calls from anyone claiming to be from Geek Squad. Geek Squad will never call you out of the blue to offer security support or ask for remote access to your device. If you have any doubts about the caller’s identity, hang up and call Geek Squad yourself using a verified phone number.
In this scam, you see a pop-up ad on your computer screen that warns you that viruses have been detected on your device. The pop-up pretends to be from Geek Squad and offers to scan your device for threats if you call a phone number. If you call the number, the scammer may ask you to pay a ransom to unlock your device or remove the viruses. In some cases, clicking anything on the pop-up may infect your device with actual malware.
To avoid this scam, do not click on any suspicious pop-ups or call any unknown numbers. Instead, close the pop-up window and run a scan with a legitimate antivirus program. You can also contact Geek Squad for assistance if you need help removing malware from your device.
How to protect yourself from Geek Squad scams
Here are some general tips to help you avoid falling victim to any Geek Squad scam:
- Always verify the identity of anyone who contacts you claiming to be from Geek Squad. You can do this by calling them back using a phone number from their official website or your receipt.
- Never give out your personal information, such as your bank account details, credit card numbers, passwords, or social security numbers, to anyone who contacts you unsolicited.
- Never pay anyone who contacts you unsolicited with gift cards, wire transfers, cryptocurrency, or other untraceable methods.
- Never grant remote access to your computer or device to anyone who contacts you unsolicited.
- Always use strong passwords and security software on your devices and keep them updated.
- Always report any suspicious activity or transactions to your bank, credit card company, or law enforcement.
If you think you have encountered a Geek Squad scam, you can also report it to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.