India’s Central Bureau of Investigation assisted DOJ in shutting down an online tech-support fraud that impersonated Microsoft and other reputed companies.
US-based online tech-support fraud that scammed numerous elderly Americans using call center operators in India. The alleged scamster firms have been permanently shut down, the Department of Justice (DOJ) said on Tuesday.
The DOJ announced that the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida issued a permanent injunction against five firms:
- Michael Brian Cotter
- Global Digital Concierge Pte Ltd
- Sensei Ventures Incorporated
- NE Labs Inc
- KeviSoft LLC
Following a joint operation by US authorities and India’s Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the court prohibited the firms from selling technical support through websites and telemarketing.
“The Department is grateful for the cooperation of foreign law enforcement, including India’s CBI, in investigating, disrupting, and prosecuting technical-support fraud schemes and other schemes originating abroad and directed at the American public,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Bossert Clark while appreciating India’s cooperation and support.
As per the news release from the Department of Justice, the complaint registered in October stated that Michael Cotter allegedly worked with other co-conspirators in India from around 2011 to 2020. The technical support scam contacted US consumers through internet pop-up messages that falsely seemed like security alerts from Microsoft or other well-known companies and asked users to call a specified phone number for help. Once the call was made, it would be transferred to a call center in India then the operators asked to access the computers and stated they had detected “non-existent” problems and charged users a huge amount of money while falsely claiming to fix fake issues on the computer
Domain names like “assistmysoftware,” “helpforsoftware,” and others that were used in the alleged scam are also barred by the US federal government.