Technical Support Attacks

The School of Mines and CCIT have recently seen an increase in a new type of spear-phishing attack targeting campus users. These attacks appear as a notice on your computer informing you of a technical problem and directing you to contact technical support for assistance. Often the notices do not appear via email, rather you see a pop-up or even a completely blank screen. The instructions include a phone number to call. If the targeted individual calls the phone number they are directed to log into “the school’s support site” allowing the criminal, in the guise of a support technician, full access to the computer. The criminal may also request payment for “fixing” your computer.

It is important to understand that CCIT does not work in this manner. Any communication you receive from us should ask you to call an individual that you know at an on-campus extension or our general helpline at extension 2345. If you are asked to log into a website you should confirm that you are speaking with a CCIT employee that you know. Our employees are happy to come to your office and introduce themselves if there is ever any question.

If you ever receive a notice in any form notifying you that you have a virus or any other security issue you should immediately (1) unplug your computer from the network and (2) call the on-campus support number 2345.


The authenticity of this, and all campus communication from CCIT on security related issues, can be verified from CCIT’s email verification page, reachable from a link on the main CCIT webpage.