Brother in law falls for windows phone scam..

Vokar

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A few months ago my friend/brother inlaw fell for the scam were a person calls saying they are with "windows" and thier server has noticed bad activity on his pc. He proceeds to help install a remote viewer and is scared? into paying them $200 to fix his pc and keep it safe. He also installed some Nortons Anti Hacker crap and a VPN for them. When we return from Labor Day vaca, he gets a windows screen saying to call a # cause a problem needs to be fixed. A guy sounding exactly like the last one says we can fix your pc for X amount..he gets mad and says "I've already been through this". They tell him the other company was a scam and if he pays them $500 they will fix it and try to get his $200 back from the "other" company. He FINALLY has a brain cell kick in and hangs up. The pc goes back to normal and he leaves a message with me. I call him back and tell him he has been scammed, it's not entirely a virus and he let them in.

I brought the pc home with me and did a reinstall of win 10 through the trouble shooting menu. Holding down shift then going through the reset process and releasing shift 5 secs or so after. I chose the longer option of wiping everything and just reinstalling win 10. Did I do enough? As a 2 yr noob to the diy pc life I know I have alot to learn but how much would Geek Squad have charged him to do this? Thanks for looking, I'd better get out of this janitors closet and go clean some toilets.
 

michalrz

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You never know what really was in that software he installed. I wouldn't trust anything Windows related or not on that hard drive you brought in along with the rest of the PC.
Easy version would be to run a bootable antivirus on his PC. Something like a rescue disc from AVG or Avira or other "reputable" vendor. And just run that to make sure nothing found its way back to the newly restored system.
Better version would be to connect the hard disk(s) to a known clean computer. Then, full format of all partitions on that drive and possibly even recreate the partitions with Disk Management in Windows. Reinstall from another medium.
I haven't researched on how to obtain a Windows 10 intaller, but hopefully someone will cover that stage.
 
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Vokar

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Thanks for the tips. He couldn't find any of the media that came with his pc so I've been trying to keep him on win 10 since thats what he wants. I have several win 7 keys that I can use if I decide to reformat the drive. It's an HP but that doesn't make a difference in the boot from usb windows install process does it?
 

cyclone3d

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You can get the Windows 10 installer from here:

Windows 10

It will let you download an ISO to burn or even automatically make a bootable USB stick.

Since it is already activated with Windows 10, you don't need a key to reinstall from scratch.
 

Riouken

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You definitely need to do a full deep (Not a Quick Format) re-format of the entire drive including the hidden recovery/backup partitions.

Get the windows 10 installer from Microsoft: Windows 10

Get his windows 10 key, if you dont have the sticker that came with the computer, then you can use this before you nuke the HD: If you've upgraded to Win10 and plan to upgrade your PC components, extract your key!

If he has a normal HDD use this to permanently erase everything on the disk: How To Securely Wipe Your Hard Drive with DBAN – Erase Your Data for Good « TipTopSecurity

If he has a SSD then it gets a little more complicated, read more here: http://www.kingston.com/us/community/articledetail?ArticleId=10

Then just reinstall windows fresh on the machine. You may not even need the windows key.
 
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Vokar

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You definitely need to do a full deep (Not a Quick Format) re-format of the entire drive including the hidden recovery/backup partitions.

Get the windows 10 installer from Microsoft: Windows 10

Get his windows 10 key, if you dont have the sticker that came with the computer, then you can use this before you nuke the HD: If you've upgraded to Win10 and plan to upgrade your PC components, extract your key!

If he has a normal HDD use this to permanently erase everything on the disk: How To Securely Wipe Your Hard Drive with DBAN – Erase Your Data for Good « TipTopSecurity

If he has a SSD then it gets a little more complicated, read more here: SSD Data Wiping: Sanitize or Secure Erase SSDs?

Then just reinstall windows fresh on the machine. You may not even need the windows key.

This is what I needed, key extraction and HDD Secure wipe. THANKS a ton Riouken.
I am still curious how much he is saving by going through me versus Geek Squad or another pc repair place but I really just want to help him get back to gaming. Maybe this will get him to learn a little more about the platform he is using....
 

Vokar

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He gave me $40 and he'll probably get half of that back. He wanted to help me refill my thermal paste and canned air supply as I told him after things are back on track windows wise, I would give his pc a once over. Like I said, just curious. Thanks for the links.
 

Riouken

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Also if he was seriously going to take it to the Geek Squad you should have him watch this:


Just do search for problems with Best Buys Geek Squad.

If you have a friend or family member that is going to use a Tech Repair service, I would call around to some local businesses that you trust and find out what IT Tech they use locally. Normally they will do individual public tech support as well. Generally they are much more reputable because they do not want to loose their business class customers. While they wont be any cheaper than Best Buy they will probably not be much more expensive if at all.

You can spot them pretty easily, general they will be a certified repair facility so they can do warranty work, ie Apple Certified, Dell Certified etc...
 
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cyclone3d

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He gave me $40 and he'll probably get half of that back. He wanted to help me refill my thermal paste and canned air supply as I told him after things are back on track windows wise, I would give his pc a once over. Like I said, just curious. Thanks for the links.
Canned air.... get an air compressor with a tank and never have to deal with the expense of canned air again.

I've been using a compressor for the last 20+ years. Canned air is a ripoff.
 

Vokar

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I should get an air compressor or at least a few cans I can refill at work(Semi-Truck Dealership).
 

Red Squirrel

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Definitly do a clean install, and do the same with any other machine on that same network/vlan. Not only do you not know what they put on that machine, you don't know what that program may have pushed to other machines on the network.
 

Vokar

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I ended up just replacing the 1 tb HGST hdd with a spare 2tb WD Green I had laying around. I had a hard time getting dban to work and just said F it. The HGST said refurbished on it so time for an upgrade. I did notice a 10% increase in speed during windows install and just regular operations. Thanks for the help everyone and I look forward to learning more.
 

alxlwson

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I ended up just replacing the 1 tb HGST hdd with a spare 2tb WD Green I had laying around. I had a hard time getting dban to work and just said F it. The HGST said refurbished on it so time for an upgrade. I did notice a 10% increase in speed during windows install and just regular operations. Thanks for the help everyone and I look forward to learning more.

You want to learn, so I will teach: You can't discern a 10% speed difference. Don't say things like that, mmmkay?
 
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Dead Parrot

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Swapping the HD got the job done. Was it faster? Might have been. Might be you just wanted it to be. Or it could be you have the internal clock of a Vulcan and it really was exactly 10% faster. Is the brother in law happy? If so, task accomplished.

Keep the old HD. Make yourself a test PC that you can use to learn dban and other utilities using that HD as a test victim.

I have an air compressor and still find uses for the retail air cans. For PC work, one of the small pancake units is good enough.
 
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