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Many Microsoft PC users are experiencing a nuisance scam that freezes their browser and offers an immediate solution, “Call Now!”. This may appear legitimate at first, and there are several different versions of this same scam, so it’s on the user to be vigilant. Please be aware that this is not a virus, they have been linked back to simple phishing scams, most likely from a link users clicked on while web browsing.

If you have an MSP (managed service provider) handling your I.T., do feel free to call them to resolve this issue with you over the phone. However, should you need to get back to work instantly, here is a quick tip: simply “end task” your browser.

  • Press the following keys in succession: CTRL, ALT, DELETE.
  • It should pull up a screen that allows you to get to “Task Manager”.
  • Select Task Manager and your screen will display all active programs.
  • Click on the browser you wish to terminate (Chrome, Firefox, etc) and hit “End Task”.
  • *Note – you will lose the pages or tabs you had open (but your window was likely frozen, anyway)
  • **Also Note – if you are prompted to “re-open your recent tabs or websites”, it is important to select NO of you’re back to square one.

The pop up could come in many forms, as anyone with know-how, initiative, and the “evil gene”, can execute this scam. Below are some sample pop up images you may see. They are all equally a scam.


Jeff Penner

Jeff has been in the managed services industry since 2015, understanding what business owners are looking for from technology, and helping them find it. The most important element for a business owner taking on a new technology partner is peace of mind and thus Jeff directs his efforts on finding practical information that any leader can apply to their business. Jeff lives in Vancouver, BC, sharing his love for learning and “the great indoors” with his 2 daughters.