Microsoft and Amazon team up to fight Indian fake tech support scams

Cloud Security
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Fake tech support scams, especially when impersonating the likes of Microsoft and Amazon, is an industry that costs over $1 billion in losses to its victims, according to recent FBI figures.

India is a particular hotspot for this industry, which is why the Central Bureau Investigation (CBI), the nation's federal enforcement agency, has taken action and conducted a number of raids against fake call centers across the country.

The operations undertaken by the CBI were conducted with support from Amazon and Microsoft, who provided intelligence to the body and to other international organizations looking to target fraud in their own countries.

International investigatory support

Fraudulent calls from tech and customer support impersonating Amazon and Microsoft targeted more than 2,000 customers, with most of the victims being in the US. However, a number of victims were also in the UK, Australia, Canada, Germany and Spain.

Microsoft and Amazon have been committed to combating tech fraud for some time, but this is the first time such a collaboration has taken place. By uniting with international law enforcement, the tech giants are able to share insights and intelligence across the globe to help tackle criminal organizations participating in tech fraud.

The Digital Crimes Unit (DCU), a body set up and run by Microsoft since 2013, gathers information on tech and customer support fraud while also providing guidance to its customers on how best to identify, avoid, and report fraudulent activity targeting its customers.

Microsoft stated in its blog, “We are proud of our long-standing collaboration with law enforcement to combat Tech Support Fraud, which has resulted in 30-plus call center raids and 100-plus arrests to date. We invite others across the industry to join us in this united front against criminal activity.”

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Benedict Collins
Staff Writer (Security)

Benedict has been writing about security issues for close to 5 years, at first covering geopolitics and international relations while at the University of Buckingham. During this time he studied BA Politics with Journalism, for which he received a second-class honours (upper division). Benedict then continued his studies at a postgraduate level and achieved a distinction in MA Security, Intelligence and Diplomacy. Benedict transitioned his security interests towards cybersecurity upon joining TechRadar Pro as a Staff Writer, focussing on state-sponsored threat actors, malware, social engineering, and national security. Benedict is also an expert on B2B security products, including firewalls, antivirus, endpoint security, and password management.