Federal Trade Commission Halts Alleged Imposter Scheme that it says Falsely Claimed Connection to the Agency

(April 11, 2017) - - The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has obtained a preliminary injunction that bars a Florida man from illegally deceiving consumers by falsely claiming to be offering tech support services on behalf of the FTC.

According to the complaint filed by the FTC, Daniel “Danny” Croft has been misleading consumers by falsely telling them that his fake companies, PC Guru Tech Support (often called PC Guru) and Elite Tech Support, were hired by the FTC to contact consumers and remove malicious software installed on their computers by companies he falsely claimed were shut down by the FTC.

The FTC said Croft contacted consumers by email and used fake FTC press releases and the names of FTC staff to trick consumers into contacting him so he could try to sell them unnecessary tech support services, the agency charged. The FTC’s complaint also alleges that Croft used scare tactics to frighten consumers, including claiming that the consumers’ computers were sending out information to hackers or were seriously infected with malware.

The FTC’s complaint alleges that Croft’s deceptive tactics violate the FTC Act and the CAN SPAM Act, which sets standards for unsolicited commercial email and other communications.

A federal court issued the stipulated preliminary injunction, which halts Croft’s allegedly illegal actions and requires him to turn over documents and records while the FTC moves forward with its case to stop permanently his illegal activities.

The Commission vote authorizing the staff to file the complaint and seek a temporary restraining order against the defendant in this case was 2-0. The FTC filed the complaint and request for a temporary restraining order in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

NOTE: The Commission files a complaint when it has “reason to believe” that the law has been or is being violated and it appears to the Commission that a proceeding is in the public interest. The case will be decided by the court.

Information source: Federal Trade Commission