Avoid getting scammed by fake "Threat Detected: xxbc Detected" websites

Also Known As: "Threat Detected: xxbc Detected" tech support scam
Damage level: Medium

What kind of scam is "Threat Detected: xxbc Detected"?

While browsing suspicious sites, our researchers found a webpage promoting the "Threat Detected: xxbc Detected" technical support scam. Schemes of this kind claim that visitors' devices are infected or otherwise in danger and urge them to call bogus support lines. Once the scammers are contacted, they trap victims in an elaborate scheme.

Threat Detected: xxbc Detected scam

"Threat Detected: xxbc Detected" scam overview

The "Threat Detected: xxbc Detected" scam is disguised as Microsoft's official website. The page is overlaid with multiple pop-ups warning users of various severe threats. Throughout, visitors are urged to call "Microsoft Windows Support".

It must be stressed that all the information provided by "Threat Detected: xxbc Detected" is false, and this scam is in no way associated with the Microsoft Corporation.

The scheme may take place entirely over the phone, but more often, these scams involve remote access. Scammers pretend to be "support", "Microsoft-certified technicians", etc., and request victims to allow them to connect to their devices remotely. The access is typically facilitated using legitimate software, such as UltraViewer, TeamViewer, or similar.

Threats posed by tech support scammers

After cyber criminals establish remote access to victims' computers, they can disable/remove genuine security tools, install fake anti-viruses, obtain vulnerable information, and even cause malware infections (e.g., trojans, ransomware, etc.) – all while pretending to provide technical support services.

Targeted data can include personally identifiable details (e.g., ID card or passport photos/scans, etc.), account log-in credentials (e.g., emails, social media, social networking, e-commerce, online banking, cryptowallets, etc.), and finance-related information (e.g., bank account details, credit card numbers, etc.).

Victims can be deceived into disclosing this data over the phone or entering it into phishing websites/files. Cyber criminals can also acquire it by using information-stealing malware.

What is more, the "services" of tech support scammers carry exorbitant fees. Criminals use difficult-to-trace methods to obtain money, thus minimizing the chances of prosecution and preventing victims from retrieving their funds. For example, cryptocurrencies, gift cards, pre-paid vouchers, or cash hidden in packages and shipped. Note that it is common for successfully scammed victims to be targeted repeatedly.

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

Should it be impossible to exit a scam page – end the browser's process using Task Manager. Do not restore the previous browsing session when opening the browser again since that will reopen the deceptive webpage.

If you have permitted scammers to access your device remotely – disconnect it from the Internet. Afterward, uninstall the remote access software that the cyber criminals used, as they might not need your permission to reconnect. Lastly, run a full system scan with an anti-virus and eliminate all detected threats.

If you have provided your log-in credentials – immediately change the passwords of all potentially disclosed accounts and inform their official support. However, if you have disclosed personally identifiable or finance-related data – contact the appropriate authorities without delay.

Threat Summary:
Name "Threat Detected: xxbc Detected" tech support scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Visitor's device is infected, and access has been blocked.
Disguise Microsoft
Tech Support Scammer Phone Number(s) +1-833-590-8176, +1-866-204-4210, +1-866-966-8977, +1-877-628-2276, +1-833-931-3581, +1-866-798-0876, +1-833-398-3737, +1-888-325-3062, +1-844-476-5780, +1-855-678-7609, +1-866-556-1226, +1-844-324-0021, +1-844-293-1010, +1-855-627-8309, +1-844-392-5108, +1-877-592-0775, +1-833-931-3581, +1-866-992-5553, +1-844-540-2336, +1-877-221-1147, +1-844-540-9050, +1-855-300-0549, +1-844-457-1636, +1-877-643-0396, +1-844-540-8363, +1-833-203-3639, +1-888-665-7092, 1(888)665-8106, +1833-456-0412
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 schemes; "Windows Defender Firewall Alert", "Microsoft Windows Firewall Warning", "A Malicious Item Has Been Detected!", and "U.S. Securities And Exchange Commission" are just some examples of tech support scams.

There are countless schemes promoted on the Web. Commonly used false claims relate to system infections, outdated software or subscriptions, package shipping mishaps, lotteries, giveaways, and so on. However, regardless of what this content claims or promises, the end goal is the same – to generate revenue at victims' expense.

How did I open a scam website?

Scam webpages can be force-opened when a site that uses rogue advertising networks is accessed. Alternatively, the latter may generate redirects to the former when hosted content is interacted with (e.g., clicking buttons, pop-ups, text input fields, links, etc.).

Additionally, online scams are promoted by spam browser notifications and intrusive advertisements. Misspelling a website's domain can also result in a redirect (or a redirection chain) landing on a deceptive page.

Spam (e.g., emails, DMs/PMs, SMSes, social media/ forum posts, etc.) is utilized in scam promotion as well. Adware is likewise employed for this purpose. This software can display scam-endorsing ads or force-open sites hosting deceptive content.

How to avoid visiting scam websites?

The Internet is rife with deceptive and malicious content that appears legitimate and innocuous. For example, intrusive ads and spam browser notifications may look harmless – yet redirect users to questionable sites (e.g., scam-promoting, gambling, pornography, etc.).

Therefore, we strongly recommend caution when browsing. Pay attention to URLs and enter them carefully. Be selective about which pages you allow to display browser notifications; ignore or deny these requests from suspect webpages (i.e., click "Block", "Block Notifications", etc.).

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

Another recommendation is to be vigilant with incoming emails and other messages. Attachments or links found in suspicious/irrelevant mail must not be opened, as they can be hazardous/malicious.

To prevent bundled/harmful content from infiltrating the device – download from official/verified sources and treat installations with care (e.g., read terms, study options, use "Custom/Advanced" settings, and opt out of additional apps, extensions, tools, etc.).

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

The appearance of "Threat Detected: xxbc Detected" pop-up scam (GIF):

Appearance of Threat Detected: xxbc Detected 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?

Pop-up scams are deceptive messages designed to lure users into performing specific actions. For example, victims may be tricked into calling fake helplines, allowing scammers to access devices remotely, making monetary transactions, disclosing private data, purchasing products, downloading/installing software, subscribing to services, and so forth.

What is the purpose of a pop-up scam?

Pop-up scams aim to generate revenue for their designers. Cyber criminals profit predominantly by obtaining funds through deception, selling or abusing sensitive information, promoting content (e.g., sites, apps, products, etc.), and proliferating malware.

Why do I encounter fake pop-ups?

Scam websites can be accessed via redirects generated by mistyped URLs, pages using rogue advertising networks, intrusive ads, spam browser notifications, and installed adware. Deceptive online content is also promoted through links/attachments in spam (e.g., emails, DMs/PMs, SMSes, social media/ forum posts, etc.).

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

If you cannot close a scam page, use Task Manager to end the browser's process. Keep in mind that restoring the previous browsing session will reopen the website. Therefore, start a new session when re-accessing the browser.

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

If you have allowed cyber criminals to remotely access your computer – you must first disconnect it from the Internet. Second, uninstall the remote access program that the criminals used (e.g., UltraViewer, TeamViewer, etc.). Last, perform a full system scan with an anti-virus and eliminate all 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 – change the passwords of all possibly exposed accounts and inform their official support. And if you've disclosed other private data (e.g., ID card details, passport scans/photos, credit card numbers, etc.) – immediately contact relevant authorities.

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

Combo Cleaner is designed to eliminate all manner of threats. It can scan visited websites and detect deceptive/malicious pages. It can also restrict all further access to such sites. Additionally, Combo Cleaner can remove nearly all known malware infections. It must be stressed that since high-end malicious software usually hides deep within systems – running a complete system scam is paramount.

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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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