This Scam App Wants to Trick Amazon Echo Users Into Taking a Huge Security Risk
Just by reading the app notes full of broken English, it’s obvious that the app is a scam, especially when you read the last line that references being able to “talk to our support team.” The app support link also directs users to a sketchy site claiming to help users find Alexa skills and set up their devices with just a call to a toll-free number.
And the app reviews confirm the worse. To see what happened first hand, I downloaded the app to see what would happen.
To start, I selected my device from a menu. On the next page, the app told me to plug in my Echo and then wait for an orange light. The next screen is where the scam begins and asks users to press a button to download the Alexa app.
Each time I tried, the “download” stopped at 69 percent. (Scammers apparently have the sense of humor of a 14-year-old boy, go figure.)
A dialog box requested that I call the same toll-free number, 1-844-299-3555, scattered throughout the app.
I played along with the agent “Victor.” And in less than 60 seconds, he was asking me to log on to a site to begin the remote access process. I hung up. But someone less savvy might have fallen for the spiel.
At least one of the reviews stated that they went further than I did, and was told that there was a $5 per minute charge and that the “support” team needed to take remote control of a computer to finish the setup.
With control of a computer, the scammers could take much more than just money.