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The FTC is mailing partial refunds to about 37,000 people who bought unnecessary tech support products and services from Inbound Call Experts, also known as Advanced Tech Support. People are eligible for refunds if they bought the company’s products and services between April 2012 and November 2014, and filed a refund claim with the FTC before October 27, 2017.

According to the FTC, the company’s telemarketers tricked thousands of people into buying unnecessary products and services by pretending there was something wrong with their computers. As part of a settlement with the FTC, the company paid $10 million, which the FTC is using for refunds.

The FTC refund checks will come by postal mail. You never have to pay to get a refund from the FTC. If someone contacts you and asks you to pay, it’s a scam. Please report that at

For more information about FTC’s refund programs, visit

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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

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We don't edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please ensure that your comment contains none of the above. The comments posted on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of other people, please do not include personal information. Opinions in comments that appear in this blog belong to the individuals who expressed them. They do not belong to or represent views of the Federal Trade Commission.

March 20, 2018
it's great that you are doing this but the idiots are still calling
March 21, 2018

In reply to by lmcins

Over-all i was scammed out of 1600.00 by micro-soft at least that's who they said they were.and they are still calling i hang up on them now today I found a full page message from microsoft telling me if i didn't call them back they would shut my service .
October 22, 2018

In reply to by Dave R

I am still getting Microsoft calls. First shutting down my computer— now l am getting refund—do not hang up scams!
May 14, 2019

In reply to by Bobj202

This exact thing happened to me. I reported them and now getting calls again. I was scammed out of 1600 As well from a company claiming to be Microsoft
David schmitz
June 30, 2018

In reply to by lmcins

A tech support Co has called me saying I need I tunes cards too upgrade my computer and it added up to 500.00 and there still calling
December 07, 2018

In reply to by lmcins

I kept getting calls about refunding money. I just want them to send me a check. They want my account information I won't give it to them. The last call I received was a threat to charge me more money if I didn't respond. Do I have any other recourse? Sick and tired of their phone calls and I would like money back.
December 26, 2018

In reply to by Alpha

It's a common scam to tell you they will give you a refund. They will ask for your bank account number and then deposit too much money. They will then ask you to wire money back to them (sometimes offering to let you keep part of the excess for your trouble!). Other times they ask you to buy Wal-Mart or Amazon gift cards and send them the PIN. Once you've sent back the difference, their deposit magically disappears from your account, leaving you fully scammed.
April 03, 2019

In reply to by Alpha

I just got a call saying I was due a refund Sounded like Indian person when I asked for a contact number and name they hung up..
tired of blocking
September 27, 2019

In reply to by lmcins

I have been getting the same call for about 1 year now, Trying to refund me. I keep blocking the numbers, But they just keep changing their numbers. sometime 7 times per day. How do I stop this?
March 22, 2018
March 20, 2018
I was a victim of this scam. I did not know that I had to file a complaint before Oct. 2017. Can I fill one now?
FTC Staff
April 12, 2018

In reply to by rosalieberry

If you have the claim form that was sent to you by email, you can print it and mail it according to the instructions on the form. If there is any money remaining after this round of refunds is complete, we will consider your late claim.

July 02, 2018

In reply to by FTC Staff

I filed a complaint, but never received a claim form, can I be put of the list?
S. Overton
July 16, 2018

In reply to by FTC Staff

I too was scammed out of $500. I can’t find the form to receive the refund. Someone left a message about this. Should I call them? I still get called from those computer scammers on a reg basis. Can you help me to get refund? How do I find the form? How is it called?
October 30, 2018

In reply to by FTC Staff

I received a call today at 4:47 pm EST on my cell phone from “no caller ID”. They told me I was eligible for a refund for unused computer repair services. They wanted me to give them access to my computer so they could find my IP address and credit my account. The caller insisted their files were corrupt so that’s why the needed to access my PC. I told them to mail me a check or credit my account on file. They kept insisting then, and when I refused, they said they would email a claim form to me. As expected I haven’t received anything. I hope they don’t still have any of my credit card information on file from several years ago.
June 17, 2019

In reply to by Dalz

I had this happen to me today, same exact experience. Is this real? I felt really funny about it and the guy said his name was "John Smith" -_- I was asking for names and phone numbers because I didn't trust them. They had my old card number and email but my home address I asked them to confirm was incorrect. I did not allow them access to my computer I felt too funny about it. What was your outcome?
November 24, 2018

In reply to by FTC Staff

I just stopped my father from scammed this weekend by the same company. He has lost $2,000 and was almost out $10,000. What can I do? I have names and phone numbers.
October 08, 2018

In reply to by rosalieberry

Same here...I got a pop up box telling me to stop what I was doing, & contact them immediately, or my computer would crash, & I would lose everything on cost me a total of $249.00, & to do it, I had to borrow the money, as I am on disability, & at THAT time, was not accepted on a program through the state, so I had no income!!! Didn't know there was a place to get help with this...just got another one a few days ago, AND a phone call saying they were Microsoft...
December 12, 2018

In reply to by rosalieberry

I also was a victim of this scam and paid twice, I think it was $800 for lifetime computer tech support and the second time $600. to protect my home network from various viruses. Is it too late to receive a refund?
February 26, 2019

In reply to by cmrowicki

I, too, paid about $1000+ to these tech support people for "lifetime" support. Did you get your money back, if so, how do you do it?
Faz abdlohab
March 20, 2018
Billy N
April 12, 2018
How do I get my fair refund
FTC Staff
April 12, 2018

In reply to by Billy N

If you have the claim form that was sent to you by email, you can print it and mail it according to the instructions on the form. If there is any money remaining after this round of refunds is complete, we will consider your late claim.

May 15, 2019

In reply to by FTC Staff

I was scammed out of $700.00 and it has been a while and they had the nerve to call again today 5/15/19 and said they were from Vortex. I told him not to call me again. (If you need my information please let me know.) I did file a complaint when this happened.
marie v
March 22, 2018

We have 19 men call us saying we won from 3 million to 20 million - you are asked to send 500.00 or 300.00

March 20, 2018
How do I get back my money, they're still calling me. I've reported this so many times, I have blisters, but no response. These are the people who help my computer until I paid for their security, and then I got scammed by another company claiming to be with federal authorities. I'm out over $ 1,000, minimum, and what you would maybe refund me is next to nothing. I'd like all my money back, I did report them numerous times, and you never got back to me once .
March 20, 2018
I STILL get calls from some guy from India or Pakistan trying to get me to turn on my computer and do this and that.
mom needs a refund
March 20, 2018
Is there any recourse if a claim was not made before Oct 27, 2017. My 91 year old mom was a victim of this scan. We tried to get her to dispute the $700. charges with help from the credit card company but she was too embarrassed to do so. I was unaware of the refund. This company had the audacity to ask her to renew her services the next year. By then we had started to help her with her money.
FTC Staff
June 08, 2018

In reply to by mom needs a refund

We are not accepting new claims for refunds.

June 18, 2019

In reply to by FTC Staff

My father 91 years old is receiving calls daily, it's very upsetting, now we were able to call them back and got the run around to go on ultra viewer. and download form for refund, this also is a scam. We have unsuccessfully tried to block the number. Help the people to end these upsetting calls
March 20, 2018
My company was Microsoft Tech, and they are still very active.
March 20, 2018
It seems the latest calls from tech support ask about previous payments. I did not fall for their scam the first time so I did not listen long enough to see if they wanted money to get a refund. I suspect that was next.
March 23, 2018

In reply to by Gator

the company was only posing as Microsoft - they are not actually Microsoft. You know that right?
March 20, 2018
They have called me a few times however, I felt it was a scam since they tried to convince me that there was something wrong with my PC (Can't remember what is was) But, I have a Mac. Also I am wondering if you are aware of Mac Keeper? they hold peoples Macs hostage. What they do is place one of their ads on the opening page of your computer and if you call the number (which stupidly did)to get them to remove their as off your opening screen so you can use your computer they further take over your computer and tell you that your Apple Care has expired and that you need to pay to have it renewed (Apple Care does expire however, Apple will not allow you to purchase more insurance after it does since it is only an insurance policy you purchase for 2 or 4 years. They also told me that computer had been compromised and that you need Mac Keeper software to protect your However, while they are trying to get you to buy their product their cursors are moving around your screen clicking on folders and preferences while telling you that this is removing security threats and compromises. Having realized I had just been scammed I quickly closed my computer and called Apple who did a security check and found that they had hacked my computer and installed their app onto my hard drive. The tech was able to delete the app and installed free Malware detector that I use every week to check if there are security risks. She then told me to check with my bank to see if they had got into my bank accounts and they had tried to but my bank caught it in time and they got nothing.
March 22, 2018

In reply to by mothertree

They did that too my mother too, and i told her that you never call a number and i told her that they are doing it to so many people, i made her call and cancel somethings so that they couldn't get to it. So its great to know people arent alone and hopefully tbe FTC WILL get these Mac people too!!!
March 20, 2018
A victim of IT support companies I understand the problem. The banks in most cases are not helpful in preventing continued billing when you request cancellation of the services. It's a long time-consuming process disputing charges. Shameful business practices.
March 20, 2018
I've been scammed will dig out the information and give you more information.
March 22, 2018
March 21, 2018
Be careful of incoming callers claiming to be offering refunds. "Let me guide you to the website where we'll process your refund" the friendly-sounding caller may say. In fact, once you give them remote access to your computer they will quickly put a password on it, tell you that there are security problems, and hold your computer ransom unless you pay for bogus tech services. NEVER ALLOW SOMEONE YOU DON'T KNOW REMOTELY CONTROL YOUR COMPUTER.
March 22, 2018

In reply to by mjc775

So true, dont let anyone who calls you have access to computer!
March 21, 2018
The Microsoft Company scammed me out of approx$1700.00 dollars between 3/15/17 and now today I recieved a full one page add on my pc either i call them or they will shut me down.
May 06, 2019

In reply to by Bobj202

Same here, I never got a email. Getting Calls now saying refund due. Not going to call # back. 888-629-1633
September 19, 2019

In reply to by Tory1500

That isn't really Microsoft. They are scammers pretending
March 21, 2018
I ask the caller if I can have their information for verification with the FTC, so I hear a click after, guessing, some supervisor tells the agent to hang-up.
March 21, 2018
I was scammed by these people ,I panicked when my computer blasted a super loud sound so I complied with calling the number that was on my screen. When my husband arrived home by 7 pm, I told him and that's how I realized that I was scammed. I called my bank to stop payment. Then I got called by these people demanding payment everyday ten times in a day. They called my landline as well as my cell phone. I believe that they have hacked my financial information. These people have Indian accents and had different names being passed on to me as their customer service whenever I verified their company's name.
March 22, 2018

In reply to by cwdush

That’s a scam happened to me also I called the banks to stop payment and changed accounts
March 21, 2018
I am grateful for the refund! It was so long ago I'd forgotten. I had another issue about a year ago. A pop up flashed up on my screen and I hit the x to get rid of it, bad move, apparently that was the avenue they used to take over. Everything was locked up...long story short it cost me a couple hundred to have my hard drive completely gone over and get disentangled from these charlatans. I was lucky that I pulled the plug when I did or they would have drained every account we have. Pulling the plug was the only way to shut my system down! What a mess!
Don't use your…
March 22, 2018
I am over 65 and I know we are being scammed more than most. I see a lot of stuff being repeated here, and it seems fcc is familiar with every scam or robo call I get. I get about 10 times as many scam or robo calls than actural phone calls from actual people. My phone has the do not call option and yet these scams use numbers from my home area. Some actually use our owne phone number as the caller ID. Id like to know if you are doing ONE thing to stop all this. I don't see the evidence of it at all. Thank you for LOOKING out for US.