Avoid getting scammed by websites displaying "Error Code: W9KA528V"

Also Known As: "Error Code: W9KA528V" tech support scam
Damage level: Medium

What kind of scam is "Error Code: W9KA528V"?

Our research team discovered the "Error Code: W9KA528V" technical support scam during a routine investigation of untrustworthy websites. It is presented as a warning from Microsoft Windows stating that the user's system has been blocked due to security concerns. This scam aims to trick victims into calling the fake helpline.

Error Code: W9KA528V scam

"Error Code: W9KA528V" scam overview

Once a webpage running the "Error Code: W9KA528V" scam is visited, it displays multiple pop-up windows, including a fake system scan performed by the Microsoft Defender Antivirus (referred to by its former name – "Windows Defender"). Several bogus threat reports alert the user of nonexistent threats. The topmost pop-up states that access to the device has been blocked due to security reasons. Throughout the scam, the user is urged to call the support line.

It must be emphasized that all these claims are false, and this deceptive content is in no way associated with Windows or its developer – Microsoft.

How the scam progresses once the scammers are called can vary. Typically, cyber criminals ask permission to access victims' devices remotely. They tend to use legitimate remote access software such as UltraViewer, TeamViewer, AnyDesk, or other programs. While on call, the scammers continue the pretense of being "Microsoft-certified technicians", "Windows support", "expert technicians", and so on.

After access has been established, the criminals can disable/remove security tools, install fake anti-viruses, obtain sensitive data, and even infiltrate actual malware into the system (e.g., trojans, ransomware, cryptominers, etc.).

Victims can be tricked into disclosing their private information over the phone or entering it into phishing files/websites. Data can also be extracted through the use of information-stealing malware. Cyber criminals primarily target account log-in credentials (e.g., emails, social networking/media, e-commerce, online banking, cryptowallets, etc.), personally identifiable details, and finance-related data (e.g., banking account details, credit card numbers, etc.).

Furthermore, the "services" of scammers tend to be exorbitantly priced. Criminals prefer difficult-to-trace methods for obtaining funds so as to minimize the chances of persecution and money retrieval. For example, cryptocurrencies, gift cards, pre-paid vouchers, or cash hidden in packages and shipped. What is more, successfully scammed victims can get targeted repeatedly.

To summarize, by trusting a scam like "Error Code: W9KA528V" – users can experience system infections, severe privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft.

Should it be impossible to close a scam page, end the browser's process using Windows Task Manager. When the browser is re-accessed, do not restore the previous browsing session to avoid reopening the deceptive webpage.

If you have allowed cyber criminals to remotely access your device – first, you must disconnect it from the Internet. Second, uninstall the remote access program that the criminals used, as they may not need your consent to reconnect. Last, run a full system scan with an anti-virus and eliminate all detected threats.

And if you believe that your log-in credentials have been exposed – change the passwords of all possibly compromised accounts and inform their official support. If you suspect that your other private information is at risk (e.g., ID card details, passport photos/scans, credit card numbers, etc.) – contact the appropriate authorities without delay.

Threat Summary:
Name "Error Code: W9KA528V" tech support scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Device was blocked for security reasons.
Disguise Microsoft
Tech Support Scammer Phone Number 01913-084256
Related Domains testiminatols[.]space
Detection Names (testiminatols[.]space) N/A (VirusTotal)
Serving IP Address (testiminatols[.]space)
Symptoms Fake error messages, fake system warnings, pop-up errors, hoax computer scan.
Distribution methods Compromised websites, rogue online pop-up ads, potentially unwanted applications.
Damage Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft, possible malware infections.
Malware Removal (Windows)

To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
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Technical support scam examples

We have investigated thousands of online scams; "Error Code: 0x80073b01", "Subscription Renewed Successfully For 349$", "Error Code: 2V7HGTVB", "Clop Ransomware.dll", and "!!Dridex007!! Malware Detected" are but some examples of tech support scams.

The Internet is rife with deceptive and malicious content. Various scam models are used to gain and subsequently abuse victims' trust, e.g., warnings, alerts, errors, lotteries, giveaways, refunds, etc.

Some online schemes are basic and full of errors, while others are competently disguised as content associated with legitimate service providers, companies, organizations, and other entities.

How did I open a scam website?

Deceptive websites are promoted by pages that use rogue advertising networks. The former can be force-opened the moment a rogue webpage is accessed or redirected to when hosted content is interacted with (e.g., clicking buttons, text input fields, ads, links, etc.).

Spam browser notifications and intrusive advertisements endorse online scams as well. Misspelling a website's URL can also result in a redirect (or a redirection chain leading) to such a page. Additionally, adware can display ads promoting scams or cause redirects to webpages running them.

How to avoid visiting scam websites?

It is essential to exercise caution while browsing since fraudulent and malicious online content usually appears legitimate and harmless.

We advise against using websites that offer pirated software/media or other questionable services (e.g., illegal streaming/downloading, Torrenting, etc.), as these sites are typically monetized via rogue advertising networks.

To avoid receiving unwanted browsing notifications – do not permit suspicious webpages to deliver them (i.e., do not click "Allow", "Allow Notifications", etc.). Instead, ignore or deny notification requests from such pages (i.e., click "Block", "Block Notifications", etc.). We also recommend paying attention to URLs and entering them with care.

To prevent bundled/harmful content from infiltrating the system, download only from official/verified channels and approach installation processes with caution (e.g., by reading terms, using "Custom/Advanced" settings, and opting out of all supplementary apps, extensions, etc.).

If your computer is already infected, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate all threats.

Text presented in "Error Code: W9KA528V" scam topmost pop-up:

Windows Defender Security Center

IP Address: -
Your Location: -
Your ISP: -

Access to this PC has been blocked due to security reasons. (Error Code: W9KA528V)
Call Microsoft Support: 01913-084256

The appearance of "Error Code: W9KA528V" pop-up scam (GIF):

Appearance of Error Code: W9KA528V scam (GIF)

Instant automatic malware removal: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced IT skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
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Quick menu:

How to identify a pop-up scam?

Pop-up windows with various fake messages are a common type of lures cybercriminals use. They collect sensitive personal data, trick Internet users into calling fake tech support numbers, subscribe to useless online services, invest in shady cryptocurrency schemes, etc.

While in the majority of cases these pop-ups don't infect users' devices with malware, they can cause direct monetary loss or could result in identity theft.

Cybercriminals strive to create their rogue pop-up windows to look trustworthy, however, scams typically have the following characteristics:

  • Spelling mistakes and non-professional images - Closely inspect the information displayed in a pop-up. Spelling mistakes and unprofessional images could be a sign of a scam.
  • Sense of urgency - Countdown timer with a couple of minutes on it, asking you to enter your personal information or subscribe to some online service.
  • Statements that you won something - If you haven't participated in a lottery, online competition, etc., and you see a pop-up window stating that you won.
  • Computer or mobile device scan - A pop-up window that scans your device and informs of detected issues - is undoubtedly a scam; webpages cannot perform such actions.
  • Exclusivity - Pop-up windows stating that only you are given secret access to a financial scheme that can quickly make you rich.

Example of a pop-up scam:

Example of a pop-up scam

How do pop-up scams work?

Cybercriminals and deceptive marketers usually use various advertising networks, search engine poisoning techniques, and shady websites to generate traffic to their pop-ups. Users land on their online lures after clicking on fake download buttons, using a torrent website, or simply clicking on an Internet search engine result.

Based on users' location and device information, they are presented with a scam pop-up. Lures presented in such pop-ups range from get-rich-quick schemes to fake virus scans.

How to remove fake pop-ups?

In most cases, pop-up scams do not infect users' devices with malware. If you encountered a scam pop-up, simply closing it should be enough. In some cases scam, pop-ups may be hard to close; in such cases - close your Internet browser and restart it.

In extremely rare cases, you might need to reset your Internet browser. For this, use our instructions explaining how to reset Internet browser settings.

How to prevent fake pop-ups?

To prevent seeing pop-up scams, you should visit only reputable websites. Torrent, Crack, free online movie streaming, YouTube video download, and other websites of similar reputation commonly redirect Internet users to pop-up scams.

To minimize the risk of encountering pop-up scams, you should keep your Internet browsers up-to-date and use reputable anti-malware application. For this purpose, we recommend Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.

What to do if you fell for a pop-up scam?

This depends on the type of scam that you fell for. Most commonly, pop-up scams try to trick users into sending money, giving away personal information, or giving access to one's device.

  • If you sent money to scammers: You should contact your financial institution and explain that you were scammed. If informed promptly, there's a chance to get your money back.
  • If you gave away your personal information: You should change your passwords and enable two-factor authentication in all online services that you use. Visit Federal Trade Commission to report identity theft and get personalized recovery steps.
  • If you let scammers connect to your device: You should scan your computer with reputable anti-malware (we recommend Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows) - cyber criminals could have planted trojans, keyloggers, and other malware, don't use your computer until removing possible threats.
  • Help other Internet users: report Internet scams to Federal Trade Commission.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is a pop-up scam?

Basically, pop-up scams are messages intended to trick victims into performing specific actions, e.g., calling fake support lines, allowing remote access to devices, transferring money, disclosing private data, downloading/installing content, etc.

What is the purpose of a pop-up scam?

Pop-up scams are designed to generate revenue for scammers. Cyber criminals predominantly profit by obtaining funds through deception, selling or abusing sensitive information, promoting content, and proliferating malware.

Why do I encounter fake pop-ups?

Pop-up scams are run on rogue webpages. Most visitors to these pages access them via redirects generated by websites using rogue advertising networks, mistyped URLs, spam browser notifications, intrusive ads, or installed adware.

I cannot exit a scam page, how do I close it?

If you cannot exit a scam page, end the browser's process via Windows Task Manager. Keep in mind that the previous browsing session must not be restored when re-accessing the browser, as that will reopen the deceptive website.

I have allowed cyber criminals to remotely access my computer, what should I do?

If you have allowed cyber criminals to access your computer remotely, immediately disconnect it from the Internet. Afterwards, remove the remote access software that the criminals used (e.g., TeamViewer, UltraViewer, AnyDesk, etc.). Lastly, perform a complete system scan with an anti-virus and remove all detected threats.

I have provided my personal information when tricked by a pop-up scam, what should I do?

If you have provided your log-in credentials – immediately change the passwords of all possibly exposed accounts and inform their official support. And if the disclosed information was of a different personal nature (e.g., ID card details, passport scan/photos, credit card numbers, etc.) – contact relevant authorities without delay.

Will Combo Cleaner protect me from pop-up scams and the malware they proliferate?

Combo Cleaner is designed to remove all manner of threats. It can scan visited websites and detect deceptive/malicious ones. It can also deny all further access to such sites. Additionally, Combo Cleaner can scan computers and eliminate nearly all known malware infections. Note that running a full system scan is essential since sophisticated malicious programs tend to hide deep within systems.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

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