Well known in the United States as a general small business services store, with a slight focus on technology such as computers, printers, and the like, Office Depot (and the somewhat recently merged Office Max) have been accused of running an in-store tech support scam. This is an accusation I certainly would believe, not just based on the evidence alone but by the very nature of such businesses.
The information spawning this claim comes, according to reports, from a “whisleblower” within the company, stating that employees in the in store tech team used rigged “tests” based on very biased, universally answerable questions (such as “does your computer run slower than when you first got it?”, or “do you see pop ups often?”, pop ups being an inevitable part of the internet these days), thus ensuring that the person will have a reason to be offered their support services, even if there are no actual issues with the computer.
Whats worse, reports say that the actual support was rarely done in store, but instead by employees of the support.com service, a third party company that provides tech support services for any company that chooses to contract them.
The end result, either way, is people spending excessive money to fix problems that don’t actually exist. The fact that a business would do this honestly doesn’t surprise me, but the fact such could go on without immediately being reported does amaze me. Upon these reports being made, Office Deport suspended it’s tech support services, and issued a typical statement acting like they knew nothing of this.
I don’t buy it. Best Buy has the same kind of “service” scam going on – it’s a standard operating model for a big-box store that specializes in tech; at least, one that doesn’t care to do the right thing.
I’ll share a few articles linking to this, and to a video that clued me in to this. Enjoy.