Windows Keyboard Shortcuts

Windows key+R: Run / Suspicious calls to “fix Windows”

Posted in Windows by estephen on August 3rd, 2007

The “Run” dialog box from the Windows Start menu is a handy way to open an application or document. Usually you would select it from the Start menu, but a shortcut is to press the Windows key and R.

Once you’ve got the Run dialog box open, you can type in the name of a program and then Enter. Here are some popular ones:

  • cmd: Command prompt for running DOS-style commands
  • notepad: The Notepad app
  • sol: Solitaire
  • winword: Microsoft Word
  • calc: the Calculator

You can also open directories by pressing Win+R, then typing the directory name (such as C:\TEMP) and pressing Enter.

More recent versions of Windows also let you type in a URL, such as, and it will open in a browser automatically.

EDIT FOR FEB, 2012: Megan asked in the comments how you know what to type. There is not an easy way, because there’s no definitive list. What happens is that Windows will look through a list of directories (known as your “path“) for an application (that is, a program file ending in .com or .exe) that matches the name you typed. If you view the properties of the shortcuts, you can find the program name. If you look in your Microsoft Office folder (such as C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office14) you will see Applications, such as POWERPNT.EXE. So then you know what to type next time.

EDIT FOR JUNE, 2013: From the comments below, a lot of you are getting suspicious calls telling you to run various commands using the Win+R key. As a rule of thumb, even if the command is safe, NO ONE FROM A COMPANY CALLED “WINDOWS” WILL EVER CALL YOU ABOUT A VIRUS. Just hang up on them and ignore the call. Most likely the caller is a scam artist who will try to convince you that your computer has a virus or is otherwise doing bad things, and then magically they happen to know this information somehow, and also magically they happen to be able to sell you a solution. You should never trust people who cold-call you with such information. Instead, get someone you trust to check out your computer.

Good practices:

  1. Never trust anything that is being told to you over the phone/email from someone contacting you about your computer.
  2. Never run commands that you don’t know 100% what they do (especially if a stranger is telling you to run them).
  3. Never give your credit card over the phone to any stranger who called you.

EDIT FOR JAN 2015: It’s amazing to me how long this scam has been running and how many comments this post gets. I stand by the advice of just hanging up, or saying “please remove me from your list and don’t call me again” and then hang up.

107 Responses to 'Windows key+R: Run / Suspicious calls to “fix Windows”'

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  1. biljana maksimovic said,

    on April 13th, 2011 at 10:03 am

    at 12:00 shut down – s

  2. Megan Tran said,

    on February 13th, 2012 at 9:12 pm

    How do you know what commands to type into the box? For example, “winword” is Microsoft Word, but what about Microsoft Powerpoint? What if you wanted to open other applications? Is there a way to check what the command is?

  3. Wolf said,

    on August 31st, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    What If you get a strange call saying “My server has detected a virus on your computer. Don’t use your internet” then they tell you to press the windows key plus r and then type in cookies? Is that suspicious?

  4. estephen said,

    on August 31st, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    Yeah, that’s suspicious. I don’t know what the “cookies” program would do, but Win+R is the Run command. Cookies doesn’t do anything on my system, though.

  5. Dave In Arizona said,

    on October 3rd, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    Received a call from someone with a heavy Indian accent claiming to be from Microsoft in New York; he indicated their system had detected a virus on my system. He called to help me remove said virus. The first step, he said, was to press the WinKey+R to open a window showing all the infected files. Beware of such calls.

  6. Blair said,

    on October 12th, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    I had same call about them detecting virus on my PC, with heavy Indian accent. First call I hung up, then she called back so I questioned her about accessing my pc ( in my case pc’s not that she knew) and the legitimacy of the company calling. I was given a website universal pc bla bla bla. Then she was a little agitated, said goodbye and hung up. Watch out for these fuckers, the do a start+R and some shit, I didn’t do it and advise you not to either.

  7. Richard said,

    on October 12th, 2012 at 8:04 pm

    I had a call from a guy with an Indian accent. He told me to do Windows + R
    I just kept saying yes. Dude kept calling me mom lol.

  8. ibrahim said,

    on November 17th, 2012 at 7:51 am

    what did he say, he said the same thing to me, i forgot the words he said, windows+r+(some words)…if u guys remember can you tell me

  9. jonathon said,

    on January 11th, 2013 at 4:46 am

    just had a call and he asked my hit windows and r then asked me to type a word that began with F but i couldnt understand fully and then also the word charlie but was on a private number so i hung up and then they rung once or twice more and now stopped but they said some hackers had hacked into my computer and where DOING BAD THINGS.

  10. Dave said,

    on January 31st, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    Just happened here….hung up

  11. pat said,

    on February 23rd, 2013 at 11:42 am

    I got the window + R key call from a man with a Indian accent…I did it BUT did not type the word I was given (eventvw)..Help…am I at any risk?? thanks.

  12. Gio said,

    on February 27th, 2013 at 10:52 am

    Just had the indian guy calling me asking me also about to do a RUN on my computer. He went as far as giving me a name of his supervisor gary wilson calling from california about error reports on windows gave me a phone number 209-813-2727 and a supposedly mine windows ID. All went to hell when I asked how he got my phone number since it’s not attached to any of my computers and that I was not sure which computer he wanted me to look at. Heavy accent almost impossible to understand. They did try hard though…LOL…

  13. Gio said,

    on February 27th, 2013 at 10:57 am

    that command is an event viewer and since you did not type anything you are fine

  14. ashna said,

    on March 6th, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    recieved the same call and i typed some words am i on risk please help!!
    what should i do know thanks

  15. Geoff said,

    on March 12th, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    Happened to me too, just today. I went along with the Indian guy to amuse my self haha then I yelled at him for a couple minutes and click. I have been getting at least 5 calls a day from freaking India its getting annoying already.

  16. maddie said,

    on March 14th, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    Just got a called from a guy with an indian accent also, I asked him how he knew my computer was infected and he said because my IP number is connected to my phone number and that’s how they know. I let him continue to tell me that they have detected a virus on my windows software program and that they were there to help me. he asked me to press winkey and R at the same time. At this point I tell him that I have a MAC and he hung up immediately. A friend told me that she asked the guy to tell her, what her IP number was. He told her that it was confidential and she said “but you just told me it was my IP number how can’t you tell me what it is? The guy hung up the phone.

  17. Dave said,

    on March 19th, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    Same story – press Windows Ky and R. There was lots of background noise with many calls be made. I asked how they could prove they were from microsoft? “Press the keys and you will see all the viruses affecting your computer and then you will know” – I don’t think so.

  18. jimmy tran said,

    on March 29th, 2013 at 9:27 pm

    whats window’s key ?

  19. george kintinkawe said,

    on May 3rd, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    why is it that my computer is showing at risk

  20. Ron Young said,

    on May 20th, 2013 at 8:23 pm

    Got the call today 5/20/13 heavy asian accent female. Said to press Windows key + R. Then type in “INF Virus Folder”. I said I did not believe they were from Microsoft. They hung up on me. What would that have done to my computer? Would Norton Internet Security have protected me?

  21. barb said,

    on May 27th, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    just received a call from some guy telling me I have a virus and to hit the windows and r key said ok I am not stupid and that he would be hacking my computer and boy did he go off on me and used language that no man should ever say i put him on speaker so my husband could hear him with that my husband said oh yeah and he became nastier to my husband using the same remarks

  22. Rita Fox said,

    on May 31st, 2013 at 7:42 am

    I got the same call here. I did to him what I do to all of the guys who call to tell me I’ve won Millions of dollars plus a baby blue Lexus. I play stupid. My windows are crashing? They look fine to me. Press the window key. Your silly, windows don’t have keys. They slide. I get them so flustered it’s hilarious.

  23. Jen said,

    on June 1st, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    I just received the call as well. I played along for a while. It was kind of fun to mess with them. He said, “take one finger and press the windows key and take the other finger and press R”. I said, “I’ll take my finger and do that if he takes his finger at the same time and sticks it up his ass.” Then I told him to go EFF himself. He hung up. oh… what fun!

  24. 1107 said,

    on June 2nd, 2013 at 9:57 am

    wheres the answers?

  25. Terry said,

    on June 20th, 2013 at 5:23 pm

    I received this same call today, but did do the windows + r, then entered eventvw, did put in my email address, then eventually hung up. Can I erase anything now that may have been exposed, or should I take my computer down to local computer store so they can erase anything to prevent hacking?

  26. Casey said,

    on June 21st, 2013 at 12:24 pm

    Got a call just now – very noisy, very Indian, name – Jamas William and his phone number is 00242423701522. He told me he was from Microsoft and it was their obligation to let me know that somehow I had downloaded spyware and malware from the Internet. When he told me to hold the Windows key and R I guessed something was up … put him on speaker while I did a search and found out on Microsoft that this is a common scam. Thanked him and hung up. He was very convincing so to all who did what you were told, don’t feel bad about being caught in this web.

  27. jagga said,

    on July 6th, 2013 at 1:59 am

    Just got the same call. played along with the guy for 10 minutes. He had and Indian accent. I got him to spell his name which apparently was “John Davison”… I don’t think so, haha. Said he was from Windows at the Sydney (Australia) site so I asked for him number which he said was 9252678747. This is clearly not a Sydney number so I questioned it, then he said that was the global number from California USA. When he finally cottoned on that I was not doing what he asked, he said “do you want me to spell ‘fuck’ for you”. Made me laugh. He eventually hung up. LOL

  28. Cece said,

    on July 19th, 2013 at 1:23 pm

    Just got a call from “Brad” who said he was in Clifton, New York and had a very heavy Indian accent. Same as above, press windows key and R and tell him what it says. I asked what train stop he gets off to get to work. He read me the address from the website and wanted to put me through to his supervisor. Check the website and spelling errors (remort support). He told me he would tell me my licensing number as well. So annoying!

  29. LIndsey said,

    on July 26th, 2013 at 9:26 am

    Happend at my job today Heavy indian accent calling from “the New York City” lmfao it was funny cause the whole office got into messing with these people we kept putting him on hold so another person could pick up it was really funny screw those people!! at the end my Boss blew a horn into the phone and hung up ha they havn’t called back since

  30. Janine said,

    on August 1st, 2013 at 8:03 pm

    I had a call from a man with a strong Indian/American accent, I kept him on the line for ages delaying him to annoy him. I said I was doing what he asked on my computer, until the point when he said what is showing on your screen, I said Ummmm it says F..K OFF…. he said no it doesn’t mam it says Suckl my C..k and abused him and hung up!! Why can’t someone put a stop to these pests

  31. Too smart for them said,

    on August 19th, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    BEWARE OF THESE PEOPLE!!!! I got all the same as many posts. They actually called twice when the first time I claimed I could not understand them. Heavy accented Indian man calling from Premium Support Technology or something close to that in California. Claiming to be authorized by windows. Same story, infected computer blah, blah, blah. I asked a bunch of questions as I tried to quickly research them. They wanted me to do the window+R. I finally asked if they thought I was stupid. That I would just do as they say so they could hack into my computer. I do not know them, do they really think I would just trust a stranger calling. To which he said “YOU ARE A F**KING STUPID GIRL” and hung up on me. I wish someone would track them down and put a stop to this online harassing.

  32. Alan said,

    on August 28th, 2013 at 4:55 am

    Same call happened to me today. I played along and finally said “do you think I’m stupid” to which he replied yes! I then let rip at the nasty little…….Indian.

  33. Bill said,

    on September 12th, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    Just got off the phone with some guy telling me the same as everyone else has heard. Told him NOTHING. Finally I ask him to give me his phone number where I could reach him and that was the end of the conversation. Microsoft aught to be checking these guys out because they are using them to try to get into our computers.

  34. tony Gillott said,

    on September 17th, 2013 at 3:40 am

    Had the call from a heavily accented Asian lady who asked if my computer was switched on, I said ‘Yes’. She then, in a very long winded way, tried to persuade me to press WinR, I said that it was impossible, it wasn’t until 20 minutes later I told her that although my computer was switched on, I was in fact 15 miles away driving my car. LOL :-)

  35. omer khan shaheen said,

    on September 23rd, 2013 at 8:31 pm

    Which company’s services for land line or mobile phones/internet are you guys using? Because i had these calls last week and am wondering how did they get hold of my phone number? It seems like a systematic flaw or a systematic fraud with possibility of a rat inside?

  36. Majarahja said,

    on October 30th, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    Got the same call, reported to Microsoft. They gave me a number which surprisingly did call them back. 1-800-347-9066 . They are Indians who speak bad English.

  37. Majarahja said,

    on October 30th, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    I think numbers are called at random. EVERYONE has a computer today and chances are they get someone with every call.

  38. Joy said,

    on November 21st, 2013 at 6:15 am

    Just had the same call from an unavailable number. Told him I wanted him to speak to my IT department at which point he lost interest.

    Presume they’re just trying to sell their services?

  39. estephen said,

    on November 21st, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    It’s crazy to me how many people are getting these calls still. This has been going on for a long time.

  40. on November 22nd, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    […] The Google search also identified that many others have been targeted by this scam, and probably not just by the one person. […]

  41. Carrie said,

    on November 27th, 2013 at 2:44 am

    LOL. I just had a call. Had one about a month ago and kept them on the ph for ages. They only gave up when I asked was it a record to keep them on the phone for their bullshit call for half an hour.
    Tonight I acted dumb. “No I cant see the key next to CTRL as it’s dark and I don’t have my glasses on. Oh, not my tablet. OK Yes I do have a PC.” Then she started talking real slow like I was a complete idiot. Said turn on my PC and I asked which one as I had 4. She said doesn’t matter they all have malicious software on them. OMG I said, then asked her for her ph number. She said she was not giving me her ph number so then I said real slow…it doesn’t matter. We have been on the phone long enough for your call to be traced and I will now call…….beep, beep, beep…call gone LOL

  42. Mike said,

    on December 19th, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    I just received the same call from an “unavailable” number and a guy was a very think Indian accent from “24/7 ITEC Solution” said that my computer was infected and sending their company error messages and that it was about to “crash at any moment”. He then said the normal, is my computer on, am I in front of it, hit WIN+R, etc. when I asked him how I had a relationship with his company, he said that when I bought my computer I’d entered into a contract with his company. I said “Right, because I have an open-ended contract with your company that’s cost me nothing for 5+ years and I have no records of.” Being at work at the time and not wanting to fool with this nonsense, I decided to just jet him know the jig is up – I have my own IT department, this is a scam, and the call is being recorded. Oddly enough, he immediately hung up.
    Some things never change – the sun goes up, the sun goes down, and the evil will try to prey on the weak. Internet 101: If you didn’t contact them, they’re not legit, and if you don’t know exactly what you’re doing, DON’T DO IT.

  43. Maria Welch said,

    on January 8th, 2014 at 5:22 pm

    I got the call from a guy with a thick Indian accent (1-877-253-2008 if you call back it is not in service) telling me to hit the Microsoft button and R and there would be all these terrible viruses. I hung up on him. They already have your name, address, and phone number. Watch out!

  44. mandy said,

    on January 14th, 2014 at 7:21 am

    Same call, this time the Indian accented guy said he was calling from London. I kept him talking for a while, but when he asked me to press WIN and R, I put the phone on the desk and left him talking. When he eventually realised I wasn’t listening he rang off and rang back, so I picked up the call, but again didn’t bother to listen. He gave up after that

  45. Mark said,

    on January 20th, 2014 at 12:45 pm

    We had a call this evening from an Indian guy who said our computer was being accessed from several remote locations and that we were responsible for anything they did. He asked us to press Windows R and said he would give us more instructions.. He gave us a phony IP address in an attempt to prove he was genuine that didn’t match our real IP address. He said he was from a company called ‘Digital Network Services’ that was based in the USA. He spent 45 minutes on the phone trying to convince us that he was genuine until we asked him whether he would like our bank account numbers and pin access now so that he could empty our accounts. At this point he guessed we were on to him and hung up the phone

  46. Kathy said,

    on January 21st, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    on Jan. 17, also got a call from a “Microsoft tech” with a heavy Indian accent, so heavy I had to have him keep repeating…He wanted me to press the flag key and the R and when I doubted he was from Microsoft and how would I know, etc. and just kept dragging my feet…He said, “Why don’t you go into the bathroom and F*** yourself with a carrot” I could understand every word of that!!! It made me laugh and I hung up.

  47. ivy said,

    on January 23rd, 2014 at 11:31 am

    I just got the call 15 minutes ago. When the Indian guy said i had malware i told him hold on i am going to run my trend micro platinum protection. When it completed I said nope your wrong i am perfectly protected. by the way your all over the web i found a site (this site) that says you guys are scam artist and hackers. he said no mom. i said yeah right good bye scam artist

  48. Eddie said,

    on January 28th, 2014 at 8:58 am

    These guys have been at it for a number of years. I got the same call around 3 years ago and I just started getting the call again from the same people with the heavy Indian accent. I played along with him for a while until he asked me what it said on the screen and that’s when I told him it says go “F” yourself. These people ARE the viruses. Your best bet is just hang up on them. There is nothing wrong with your computer.

  49. John Boy said,

    on February 11th, 2014 at 6:26 am

    Got the call today from a guy with a thick Indian accent, the only reason I was on the phone for more than 10 seconds is because I couldn’t understand what company he was claiming to be from. Virgin Media also use Indian call centre’s so I thought for a second that It could’ve been them because I managed to detect the word “computer” in his verbiage. After about 30 seconds he told me that he was gonna hand me over to his “manager” (which was of course the same guy) and told me to sit in front of my computer and press the windows key + r. Once I heard that I just hung up. They must think people are thick.

  50. Kyle Miller said,

    on February 22nd, 2014 at 4:56 am

    when i press win->r then type in cmd it comes up saying windows cannot find “cmd” please make sure to spell it correctly and try again

  51. Kyle Miller said,

    on February 22nd, 2014 at 5:04 am

    in fact i dont even have the command prompt app… what do i do

  52. Anders Arlberg said,

    on February 26th, 2014 at 6:52 am

    Received a call 10 minutes ago, exactly as described above:
    1) A woman called from the number +1-303-344-29287 and said my computer had been sending error messages for the past 2 weeks. Lots of background noise from other callers.
    2) She asked if my computer was switched on (I said ‘yes’) :-) and she forwarded the call to “her supervisor”
    3) The “Supervisor” (a male) told me to press the “windows” key and the “R” key simultaneously. He then asked me what I saw on my screen.

    Well; from the first 3 seconds of this call, I smelled the scent of a scam, so I decided to keep them on the phone for as long as possible, to f*ck up their time. As the “Supervisor” repeatedly tried to have me describing what I saw on my screen (without success) the call was abruptly terminated by him.

    Poor bastard. How can idiots like this even imagine people will believe Microsoft will call them?

    I managed to block 10 minutes of their time :-) yeah! that means 10 minutes less for them to fool others. -A donation of my time that I gladly accept…

  53. Morgan said,

    on February 26th, 2014 at 5:49 pm

    I received a call from Tech Resolver in Albany, NY the Indian gentleman tried his best to get me to run a command by holding down the Windows key and hitting the “R” key. I kept telling him nothing was happening. LOL He got so frustrated he called his supervisor he then proceeded to tell me the same command. I told him I am hitting it and holding it…nothing is happening. I did this for 5 minutes. Mind you I am not hitting anything. little did they know I am the IT Admin for my company. He then asked what type of computer I had I told him it is a “NotAnIdiot” it is made in India….he hung up. What a SCAM!!!!

  54. estephen said,

    on March 4th, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    Kyle: I wouldn’t worry too much about it. :)

  55. Yoop said,

    on March 8th, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    I must have got the new guy, he just called and blabbered something about our email being hacked and he needed to check our computer. First I think how does this guy know which computer….o he says…..

    hit the windows key and r…….

    wait, wait, wait….how do I know u aren’t?…Where are you calling from again?

    Delaware, Wilmington


    Did you say Delaware, Wilmington?

    Yes, Delaware, Wilmington…..

    ah, Okay…Bye.Bye

  56. windowskey+r said,

    on March 21st, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    omg someone needs to get these people same thing pretty much happened to me today got a call from some guy I could barely understand and he said are you sitting in front of your computer are you on the home page and then to press windows key + r at the same time and then I asked how they got my phone number and said it was connected to their main server whatever what a scam oh the number was unavailable too joke is what it was don’t even answer unavailable numbers !

  57. Nancy said,

    on March 25th, 2014 at 3:07 pm

    I got one of these calls yesterday from “Mike Williams” of Sri Lanka. (I suppose Williams is a common name there.) Same story about my computer sending out infection notices to their server. I said “Do you think I was born yesterday.” No, I needed to press CNTRL, flag, R. Sure, I did. I am sorry I didn’t play really stupid and tell them I could not find those keys. lol

  58. David said,

    on March 27th, 2014 at 5:22 pm

    Got a call today from an Indian speaking accent dude at my work with the same story. I played along and then told him it brought up a porn site. He told me to hit other keys which I didn’t, I then I told him the porn movie was now playing. He started telling me about viruses and I needed to shut it down. I told him I thought you could only get a virus from actual physical contact. He started talking real fast getting frustrated. I then told him that it was ok because it was his sister in the movie with a dog. He yelled something in a language I didn’t know an then hung up, which made my day.

  59. Sarah said,

    on March 29th, 2014 at 10:40 am

    I recently gotten a call today saying they were from California, saying he was “Microsoft Tech support” that had a heavy Indian or Philippio accent that was kinda hard to understand some if his words. He also had gone by the name “Eric White”. He had called from 1-800-347-9066. I had told him that it had felt like a scam but he had tried to assure me that it was’t. He had me do windows+r to do whatever he thought was going to happen. And then he tried to get me to download teamservice or whatever it was. I told him that he was a hacker and was trying to hack my computer himself. I had told him I was going to call the cops on him and he just laughed and said I was verbally abusive to him by calling him a hacker. Then I got into a long argument with him and he started screaming and yelling at me and swearing at me. He thought I was dumb when I asked where he was calling from then I asked him if he was from India or Indonesia or the Philippines or anything over there and he just laughed. I argued with him how he knew my computer was hacked and how he knew to call my house and stuff and he fed me some line and I told him I seemed to not believe him about what he was saying and stuff. I needed someone to tell me that he was from wherever he said but he told me to Google it and got into a argument with him about it. I told him at the end of the call that he was a scammer and I was going to call the cops on him and he said ma’am I’m not a hacker and I said I was still going to call the cops on him.

  60. Calvin said,

    on April 22nd, 2014 at 6:36 am

    Just received the exact same call as described above. I asked why I had to press Windows + R and it might delete my drive etc and they hung up.

  61. Connie said,

    on May 3rd, 2014 at 2:10 pm

    I just received a call from an Indian sounding guy. He gave me his ID number and a phone number of 855-264-9273. He said there had been unusual activity the last few days on my computer and wanted me to hit the CTRL key, then the Windows key and the small r. I told him my son-in-law was a computer expert and I would run it by him. He simply hung up then. In these postings and didn’t see where the CONTROL key was requested. Another angle I guess or maybe they figured a new way to hack since people were catching on to the windows and r previously requested. Anyway…FYI.

  62. Diane said,

    on May 15th, 2014 at 2:53 pm

    Just got the same call yesterday for an India sounding guy w/thick accent. Said the same things to me. He used the same line, and prompted me to press Windows + R which I did but refused to type in CMD as he directed. I called out for my husband he started yelling to hang up – the caller then told me he made a mistake and our computers were fine.

  63. Michael said,

    on May 19th, 2014 at 3:25 am

    Just got the same call yesterday for an India sounding guy w/thick accent. Said the same things to me. He used the same line, and prompted me to press Windows + R which I did but refused to type in CMD as he directed. I called out for my husband he started yelling to hang up – the caller then told me he made a mistake and our computers were fine.

  64. Cat said,

    on June 2nd, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    I got one just now. Same deal as everyone else, except when I called them on NOT being who they say they are they threatened to put a block on my computer and lock it up until I did what they said… The guy hung up when I told him he just proved he was the criminal and that he did not have permission to access my computer, so anything he did would be an illegal activity.

    For those mentioning catching these guys and shutting them down, we can’t do anything. They’re gaining temp access of phone numbers we have just sitting in limbo (a lot are numbers only ever used during election seasons), but are actually calling from other countries that we can’t touch for this type of stuff.

  65. John said,

    on June 17th, 2014 at 11:35 am

    Just received the same call and routine from 315-000-1234 claiming to be from Windows Support. Number looked too odd to be Microsoft.

  66. John said,

    on June 17th, 2014 at 11:36 am

    Also, area code 315 is in northern New York near the Canadian border. When did Microsoft move?

  67. Dana said,

    on July 7th, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    I received a call from “Peter at Windows Technical Support”, caller ID said: Novatel with a phone number of: 210-249-0540. He had a very thick Indian accent. He informed me that my computer was sending event logs to Microsoft and that my computer was infected with viruses and malware. I have all logs turned off. He explained how he could get someone to help me (so generous of him, considering he’s a complete stranger). He walked me through how to pull up the Event Viewer and see all the “Errors” and “Warnings”. Told me that he could have someone help get my computer clean. He was under the impression that I was falling for this scam so he transferred me to another gentleman (Rick) who instructed me to download Team Viewer ( – is a legit company, but you should not ever download something like this unless you are sure of the purpose of the person using it. It allows them complete control of your computer, so unless it’s a known IT Person, etc DO NOT DO THIS!) and then give him the ID number and password. Said that he generated that ID from Microsoft (complete lie!). When I was hesitant to give him the numbers he suggested another website ( – again, appears to be legit, but DON’T do this!)

    I told him I was leery about doing this one as well he asked if he could call me back after I checked out the 2 websites. I told him I’d rather call him. He did give me a phone number of: 347-281-7937 but that anyone could help me.

    For whoever gets a call from these people: DO NOT download anything or give them any type of personal or sensitive information! If you have a concern about any “Errors” or “Warnings” please contact Microsoft directly. You can also see this Microsoft link about scams and phishing:

  68. Dana said,

    on July 7th, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Reposting with new information:

    I received a call from “Peter at Windows Technical Support”, caller ID said: Novatel with a phone number of: 210-249-0540. He had a very thick Indian accent. He informed me that my computer was sending event logs to Microsoft and that my computer was infected with viruses and malware. I have all logs turned off.

    He explained how he could get someone to help me (so generous of him, considering he’s a complete stranger). He walked me through how to pull up the Event Viewer and see all the “Errors” and “Warnings”. He was telling me to hit Control, Windows and “R”. I pretended nothing happened and he walked me through how to do it by going into Windows and searching. Told me that he could have someone help get my computer clean. He had me filter the current logs by “Critical”, “Warning” and “Error” which showed some errors. One of the warnings had a high number and I was informed that my computer was very infected.

    He was under the impression that I was falling for this scam so he transferred me to another gentleman (Rick) who instructed me to download Team Viewer ( – is a legit company, but you should not ever download something like this unless you are sure of the purpose of the person using it. It allows them complete control of your computer, so unless it’s a known IT Person, etc DO NOT DO THIS!) and then give him the ID number and password. Said that he generated that ID from Microsoft (complete lie!). When I was hesitant to give him the numbers he suggested another website ( – again, appears to be legit, but DON’T do this!)

    I told him I was leery about doing this one as well he asked if he could call me back after I checked out the 2 websites. I told him I’d rather call him. He did give me a phone number of: 347-281-7937 but that anyone could help me.

    For whoever gets a call from these people: DO NOT download anything or give them any type of personal or sensitive information! If you have a concern about any “Errors” or “Warnings” please contact Microsoft directly. You can also see this Microsoft link about scams and phishing:

  69. Tawny Y. said,

    on August 4th, 2014 at 6:49 pm

    I got this call today…we don’t have caller ID on our phone, so the only way to find out that it is a scammer is to answer the phone. When I was told (thick Indian accent, of course) that it was Microsoft Tech Support calling, and my computer was sending them multiple error reports, and that I was infected with many viruses, I decided to play along. I happened to have my new Chromebook open, so I quickly looked up their scam…which seems to hope that people are stupid enough to give then remote control of their PCs to ¨fix¨ all the horrible infections. With the first guy, I went as far as opening the ¨Run” window, as that is a completely harmless action. Then I said that I couldn’t understand what he was asking me to do next (actually true). I kept saying, ¨Speak English, man! I cannot understand a word you’re saying.¨ So he put his ¨supervisor¨ on the line, who had only slightly better English. When I asked them for a call back number, they gave me a local phone number, but said that ¨We are the service center; you will only get a busy signal at this number.” (Actually a recording that the number is not in use at this time.) I kept asking questions about why I was typing things into the ¨run¨ window, and he kept saying that I had ¨internet infections…if you will type this in I will be able to show you.” The INF command that he wanted me to type in would just show me a directory of files that have nothing to do with infections. Then I would say that if they are Internet infections, than there is no problem, because the problem lies on the internet servers, not on my local hard drives. I had him on the phone for over 20 minutes before I finally caved and said, ¨You’re clearly not with Microsoft; you obviously intend to try to gain control of my PC and either phish for information or install Malware.¨ Oddly, they hung up at this point.

  70. jim wright said,

    on August 28th, 2014 at 5:35 pm

    I had the same type of call that many have described. I played along to see what I could find out as scam busting is my business, etc. Can’t explain it all.
    Anyway. I traced the call back to an area code and number from a Country call Dominica – it is not the Dominican Republic. It is is the Caribbean.

    Have notified the authorities there which is only a police force. Small island and nothing will happen. Play along or hang up but do not do what you want you to do. After a while they will get mad and start swearing at you in very good English – the only thing they can say in good English BTW. Then they hang up.

  71. Mary said,

    on September 2nd, 2014 at 5:40 pm

    I just received a call from peter. I strung him a long for a while just for fun then hung up. He called me back. Argued with me for a while then told me when my computer crashes don’t call Microsoft I said I won’t. Hehe I had fun messing with him.

  72. Chris Brown said,

    on September 6th, 2014 at 3:42 am

    Just got the same call but he didn’t mention Windows, pressed Windows + r, and got a little pop up at the bottom right with an r in it. That confused him, which is when I asked him if it mattered that I was running Linux! I quite enjoyed that, I then pointed out to him that I was well aware of the scam and hung up.

  73. Anonymous said,

    on September 12th, 2014 at 11:54 am

    Just received a call from a Nick Thomas at 702-583-5515 stating he was from Microsoft in Las Vegas. He stated they saw heavy malicious traffic coming from my computer to their server and wanted me to go to my computer and hit cntrl window then R. Of course, I didn’t do this … Just hung-up on him.

  74. German guy said,

    on October 29th, 2014 at 8:31 am

    Also received a call from an Indian sounding bloke saying he was calling me from California, talking about some malicious activity on my PC. He told me to press ctrl + r, which I did, but then I got suspicious and told him I’d refuse to follow instructions by someone calling me from a call centre in Bangalore or whereever, which made him really angry and he went “Don’t you know that the Microsoft CEO is from India?” and then he called me a racist and prejudiced against Indian people. When I told him I wasn’t he yelled “Don’t underestimate the Indians!” which sounded like a threat and the he hung up. Altogether a rather strange experience.

  75. Curtis said,

    on November 13th, 2014 at 8:23 pm

    Just got a call from someone with a thick Indian accent. He wanted me to hit the windows r command. LOL! Right! I strung him along for maybe 20 minutes before he caught on. It was soooo much fun. He must’ve thought I was the most computer illiterate person on earth. He was very patient, I’ll give him that. If he gets tired of the scam business, he might have what it takes to handle real IT calls. I’m hoping they’ll call back. Good reason to answer calls from strange numbers. “I don’t see the ‘anykey’.” ROFL!

  76. Joe Rizzo said,

    on November 20th, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    Here’s what you do if you get this call:
    1) The Indian guy tells you to hold down Ctrl + Win + R
    2) He then wants to know what happens on your computer screen.
    3) Tell him a message has popped up on the screen
    4) He will ask what the message says
    5) You then tell him the message says- “Gandhi is a Faggot”
    6) That will generally end with him cursing at you.
    7) He will then eventually hang up.
    8) You then block his number through your phone company

  77. brandi scheer said,

    on November 24th, 2014 at 6:23 pm

    I just received this call the man told me he was from PC Speedy or something it was an Indian sounding man. He was almost demanding that I push the windows +R key I finally hung up.

  78. Michael said,

    on December 1st, 2014 at 5:43 pm

    Just had the same call 3 times in the last two days, first time I told them “you are a scammer, don’t want to deal with you” hung up on him This morning they called again, I gave them “eat shit and die, and in my best abu accent Thank you come again” This time I let them run with it, told them I was doing everything they asked but not getting any results, they put me thru to a supervisor…I let him walk me thru the steps yet again, and he asked me what I am seeing….”I see that i have wasted 20 minutes of your time when you could have been scamming someone else…he seemed put out and said something to the effect of You don’t understand how important this is to your computer and hung up…I think from here on out I will try to keep them on the line much longer….

  79. jobie said,

    on December 9th, 2014 at 5:57 am

    dec 9 2014
    got the same call,at 7:00 am, lady with thick indian accent,,said she was from microsoft,requested me to press ctrl/run so they can probably do some surrepticious damage. told her to call back after I check out what ctrl/run does. WHEN SHE CALLS BACK I WILL ASK HER IF SHE KNOWS HOW TO PLAY DICTAPHONE.

  80. Alice said,

    on January 7th, 2015 at 9:40 pm

    Get the Windows called every week guess they like my number. So I thought I should have some fun with this . I TOLD the guy from India that I have Windows in every room in my house some rooms have two or three Windows. His answer to me was go to my window open it , I said yes my window is now open, now what, he said now jump and he hung up, but they still call every week. I tell them I don’t have a computer they still call. I just can’t get rid of them.

  81. JOE said,

    on January 20th, 2015 at 5:53 pm

    i GOT A call from 24x7PC Health 929-251-8306 , Same story, I said that I was happy he called back because I bought the program and it keeps asking me for money. He then said no, it isn’t our company. I said sure it is, I have this phone number, the caller ID says your company. No, he goes different company. I said, no, it was you who sold me this stuff. This went back and forth and it sounded like he was trying to find the words in the script. Finally I said, look we’ve been on the phone for 10 minutes, you made the mistake of calling the CIA computer investigation network. When the car comes to your door, please do not cause problems. No, no, he says different company. Eventually I hung up. I then went to the do not call registry added it to the growing list of they are not doing anything, then went to my phone call blocking and blocked them. What a bunch of losers, and NO, I don’t have their software. Maybe I should get one of those high pitched whistles and blow it into the receiver.

  82. Jacque Bristol Bourgoin said,

    on January 30th, 2015 at 5:36 pm

    just received a call same thing as everyone else says. only if I let him go to his whole spiel. letting him think I was in front of my computer. I wasted about 45 min of his time. then informed him I did not on the computer I knew it was a scam and then hung up

  83. they are still at it. said,

    on March 12th, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    THey just called me. LOL They are still at it.

  84. Cassandra said,

    on March 31st, 2015 at 10:13 am

    just received the same call saying from Windows support and wanting me to push windows key and r, I told him no I didn’t know him and didn’t trust him. I told him I cant understand half of what you are saying because of your accent!! heavy Indian accent. So crazy that people will do what strangers tell you to do on a phone call!!! don’t do anything someone you haven’t contacted via a trusted company tells you to do!!!!! see being suspicious of everybody paid off in this case lol

  85. Ann Mitchell said,

    on April 10th, 2015 at 11:01 am

    I just got one of those calls at my parents house. Instead on the usual spiel they said they wanted to refund money I had paid their company! They wanted to send me the refund form by having me enter a web address into the run dialog box. I told him no and that I knew it was a scam. Eventually I hung up, he called back but my dad answered the phone, he just hung up.

  86. Al said,

    on April 24th, 2015 at 1:09 pm

    I love those calls. I try to keep them going as long as I can acting like a total noob (I have 30 years in I.T.). I have several techniques for messing with their minds. I usually interject lots of “huh” and “what” and make them repeat themselves several times. This is from a call I just got:

    Them: Typical “Windows Security” line.
    Me: I follow along acting all innocent and stuff.
    Them: Asking me to press Windows+R, etc.
    Me: “OK”
    Me: At this point, I pester them about which keys to press like I don’t understand and make them repeat their instructions a few times and then finally say, “OK, got it”.
    Them: “What do you see on your screen?”
    Me: “Uh, my computer just started rebooting. Want me to wait?”
    Them: “Yes”
    Me: “OK, it’s rebooted now.”
    Them: “What do you see on your screen?”
    Me: “My computer rebooted.”
    Them: “You’re joking, right?”
    Me: “No, maybe I pressed the wrong keys. Oh, OK, now I got it.”
    Them: “What do you see on your screen?”
    Me: “An empty black window with a flashing cursor.”
    Them: They tell me to type something.
    Me: “OK”
    Them: “What do you seen on your screen?”
    Me: “A different window.”
    Them: “What does it say?”
    Me: My favorite zinger – “It says you should look out your window and see if there’s a curise missile headed your direction.”
    Them: “Oh, uh…”
    Me: “You like that one?”
    Them: [insert profanity] Click

  87. Old Mom said,

    on April 28th, 2015 at 7:26 pm

    I just had so much fun with these criminal assholes.
    So even though my computer was on another floor, when the caller asked in an agitated tone, was I in front of my computer I said, oh yes. Then followed about 5 minutes of me pretending not to be able to find the Windows key. Once we got to where I could suddenly see it, came the command to “Press that key and the R key at the same time, and then let it go!” I pretend to comply. He wants to know what I see on the screen. This is the moment Ih ave been waiting for. I describe, first in tones of awe and then shock, the maisma of swirling colors I see on the screen. Then I describe how the screen is slowly fading. “You’re a smartass!” the scammer finally says. I shriek in reply: “NOW IT’S TOTALLY GONE BLACK! i THINK YOU KILLED IT!” then he says something really odd to me, involving what he wants to do to me. I consider stringing him along further and mentioning how at my age, I couldn’t even pay someone his age to do that to me, but it was getting boring so I just hung up.

  88. Bob C said,

    on May 11th, 2015 at 12:07 pm

    just got a call from phone number 571-916-6077, it sounded like someone from India, wanted me to press the windows key and the R key, I did not do this and do not recommend anyone doing this, just hang up.

  89. S Watson said,

    on May 18th, 2015 at 9:39 am

    Just got a call from (801) 225-4320 Clayton White – Guy saying he saying he was with e support & that my computer was downloading unwanted/unknown files. I laughed at him.

  90. Rose willows said,

    on May 21st, 2015 at 4:22 pm

    4:10 pm california a woman called from a private number stating to be from Microsoft. had me hold for technition. a heavy accented man told me to press the windows key with the r key so he could fix and trouble shoot my computer for errors. this was as I was actualy on line ordering stuff. I told them my computer was working fine, but oddly I had just had to my computer not working cuz my router had gotten unplugged prior to this call . when I asked him why he was calling from a private #, he hung on me.

  91. Kelly W said,

    on May 30th, 2015 at 9:03 am

    Just got the call. I knew it was fishy??
    Look’s like it has been going around for a while.



  92. Barb M said,

    on June 13th, 2015 at 8:26 am

    I started getting 6-8 calls in a row from a very persistent Peter with a very heavy British accent. kept insisting he was representing Microsoft and that I had a ‘clone’ in my computer and it was stealing all my information. I was shocked “Really??” I said. At that point he got very serious and told me to hold down the Win+R keys and type in the box: eventvwr. I told him I didn’t think so and he became very angry with me.
    There are 2 of these Indian persons calling (taking turns) Peter and John Martin! The number they are using with me is 800-609-7139. I kept telling them that just like my front door I do not open my computer fo/for strangers. They said they were my friends and there to help. I told them they were liars and scammers. Microsoft does not, ever call if there is a problem. And never third party calls. Because I have been able to garner so much information from them (by playing the dumb little old lady) I am considering bringing a harassment suit against them. They have called me so often that I had to put a call-block on their number. At that point they switched to my landline phone! Talk about persistence.

  93. Saundra said,

    on June 22nd, 2015 at 1:19 pm

    June 22, 2015 @2:45 pm from phone # 333-255-2222
    I just got the same call from a guy with a heavy accent and was half asleep when they called. I went as far as doing the windows plus r key and typed in cmd and it brought up my black command screen and he told me to type in something else and I did but can’t for the life of me remember what it was but then it brought up another black screen and he wanted me to type in something else but at this time I was pretty much very awake and started asking him a line of why questions. He told me so he could fix my computer problems. I then asked to speak to his supervisor he said no need for me to. I then demanded to speak to his super…lol he said hold on and came back on the line trying to change his voice but I knew it was still him. Then I said a few choice ugly words and told him to never call my # again. He called me a mean ass Bitch and he hung up. I just need to know if what I done caused my computer any problems. How do I tell? If anyone knows how to tell if it caused any problems, can you Please tell me?

  94. Steve said,

    on June 25th, 2015 at 3:12 pm

    Received a call from Edie showing Not Available #442-545-564-6894 who claimed to be with Matrix Idea Technical Support. The idiot asked me to press the Windows +R key because I had a virus he wanted to help me fix. Stated my PC was sending out messages on its own. When he told me to find the CTR key on my keyboard I kept telling him I did not have a CTR key; after driving him crazy about 12 times asking him how to spell the key & asking where it was I finally ask him if he was talking about the CTRL key; too which he said yes. Finally he go so disgusted with me he hung up.

    These people keep calling back hour after hour non-stop & do not stop until someone answers. After you get them upset they stop calling for the rest of the day but call again either 1 or 2 days later & again keep calling if no one answers.

    You know I never had phone calls until I HAD to write my phone number down when buying programs via the PC. I will NEVER write my phone number down again I will write the phone number to the company I am ordering from so they can get these phone calls.

  95. Tammy said,

    on July 13th, 2015 at 2:32 pm

    Just got a call, 813 832-8282 with an Indian accent.. She said there is a virus on my computer and I should press the windows icon and CTRL R, and then type in eventvwr I said ok, she asked me what I saw but since I wasn’t doing it she kept walking me through the process again and again. . She eventually got frustrated with me and hung up.. What a scam I feel bad for the people who actually listen and follow their instructions.

  96. TX said,

    on July 17th, 2015 at 6:06 am

    Just received a call from 204-229-5643. Told me I had a virus, and they were from the Microsoft Technical Team. Tried to get me to push control + r. I said I did, but my screen was the same (my computer
    Isn’t even on). He and his “supervisor” kept trying other things, and I just told him my screen was the same. He got mad and asked me what color panties I was wearing. Creeps.

  97. Jack said,

    on August 7th, 2015 at 3:02 pm

    I just had one of those thickly accented cockroaches call me. He was nearly impossible to understand but after patiently cajoling him to give up info, I got : He called his company VAPSECURE, said his web site was and gave up phone # 888 577 4003.
    He said his company was based in Austin, TX when I asked for his address he either couldn’t or wouldn’t provided and clicked off.

  98. dee ann said,

    on August 25th, 2015 at 10:38 am

    I just got a call right now from an accented person who said he worked for Microsoft. he said I was getting hacking alerts (sure). he said I needed to run ctrl-window key-R and he would ‘show’ me what was happening. yeah, right. I did not do anything he asked.

    I knew these to be scams, so I strung him along for information. when I asked him what my name was since he pretended to know so much about me, he did not pronounce it correctly. when I asked for a number, he provided a bogus number that did not match his area code. when I asked for a case number, then he hung up. these guys are idiots.

  99. Karin C said,

    on August 26th, 2015 at 9:30 am

    He’s still calling… Called me 2 x’s as I could not hear first time… :-) asked for his number which he would not give… just said he was from the World Wide web, that they would remove my computer # and not to complain to them when I couldn’t get on my computer. . sorry guy… wasn’t born yesterday!!!

  100. piyush said,

    on September 7th, 2015 at 5:25 pm

    guy from number 18845771246 and her name is ami smith and her voice is indian accent try to help fo fix the computer but look suspicious .she say she want to help me by windows + r key and nothing happen .looking very suspicious

  101. amy said,

    on September 10th, 2015 at 6:46 pm

    yesterday I received around 6 phone calls from, what appeared to be a local area code (started 0190), however, if you don’t take the call and you have a call log, it will seem to be a number beginning 00190, probably to stop people from ringing it back maybe.

    anyway, the first call they were advising me that they were calling from my phone provider (talktalk) and that they had detected a few issues, I already knew it was a scam as had someone tell me of it previously, although they didn’t remember what the hackers did to get in. Therefore, I got the initial part from the first call win and r together, not knowing at this stage whether they would get access, i told them i knew they were scammers n they hung up. i then googled that before actually doing it :)

    the next call I was prepared and ready to press the win and r button and then waiting for the next prompt, which was the ‘eventvwr’ word. again, i didn’t know what that did so told him that i would prefer to call talktalk back myself so that i had personally made the call, to which he tried to blag me, but this one had given me his name so i said ‘well i know your name, it’s shane isn’t it?’ ‘yeah’ he said, my reply was ‘ok, so i can ring talktalk and ask for you can’t i’ ‘yeah and bye’ came from his mouth rofl.

    the third call was a woman and at this time i had googled ‘pressing win r and computer hacking’ interestingly a website came up that would’ve step-by-step shown me how i could potentially hack another computer, so initially i came across as naive and then a little thick, well i must;ve come across as very thick because she put the phone down – bless her lol :)

    I’ve shared the incident on public media sites and would suggest or hope that any new calls are also shared with friends and family as, last year it was my mum who got hacked and they removed every last one of her photos and saved documents + it cost her in excess of £250 because as well as paying some monies to the hackers, she also had to get it rectified by Microsoft (the genuine article).

    I just wish that one of you IT nerds out there could create some software that would actually reverse what it is that they are wanting to do and that we would take over their computers and either be able to kill the hardrive or put something in the background that pops up on a persons computer they are trying to hack to advise them of this.

  102. Lauren said,

    on September 14th, 2015 at 6:22 pm

    Just talked to these jokers. I have a better plan. I didn’t hang up. I just played stupid for over 15 minutes and laughed hysterically. He asked for me to press window key and r and what appeared on the screen. I yelled chickens. Chickens everywhere. I had fun. Don’t think they’ll call back and maybe it prevented a few others from getting the stupid calls. I told him we have a backward keyboard. The bottom left key was the f12 key. I didn’t have any “second” on my screen. After many many minutes. He told me he word take my computer certificate away. Duh. Sure you will then when he realized we were laughing at him. … He told me to go to hell. New plan…I hope they call again. I’ll enjoy it more next time.

  103. Yep said,

    on October 9th, 2015 at 3:20 am

    I got a call from 019911 today. I just played the dumb user and faked what the guy asked me to : opened un a command prompt, typed ‘’, downloaded the ‘take control of my computer’ software. Then he ask ‘what do you see on the screen ?’. I told him ‘Call computer crime unit at this number ….’. He hang up, why ? I didn’t even fixed my computer :)

  104. Bob said,

    on October 23rd, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    I always lead them on til I get bored then I unload with all of my saved up hostility in a string of never ending profanity and set down the phone without hanging up. I’ve pissed them off so bad they call back and leave a message of profanities.

  105. Rich said,

    on October 26th, 2015 at 11:49 am

    I just got this call,knowing it was some kind of scam. The lady asked me to hold down the FN key and letter R. I told her nothing was happening,and she seemed confused by that. Of course my pc was turned off.
    And then I asked if it mattered if I had a mac.
    She swore at me and then hung up. The phone number on caller id is

  106. sanford said,

    on October 28th, 2015 at 7:25 am

    My computer illiterate wife got the call. Her solution? Play along and when they ask what the screen says, reply “F*** you, don’t call me no more!”

  107. anne said,

    on October 28th, 2015 at 11:09 pm

    yep. call from “00000000”. indian accent. telling me he was notified of a virus and to press the windows and R button. and that he had serviced me computer remotely before.. and when i said no.. ive never had it serviced .. ever.. he said you can check with your family member that you did! so i said.. who is this again? and he hung up. lol.they are really bold.

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