Malware removal is a tricky enterprise, with the feel that stubborn infections can once in a while be complicated to scrub away thoroughly. For Office Depot and Support.Com, the Federal Trade Commission alleges it became a tricky business that raked in tens of millions of greenbacks worth of PC repair and technical services via deceptive malware scans. As a part of an agreement with the FTC, the two corporations can pay a mixed $35 million. Office Depot is selecting up the brunt of the bill, paying $25 million, even as Support.Com has agreed to fork over $10 million.
“Consumers have a difficult enough time protecting their computers from malware, viruses, and threats,” stated FTC Chairman Joe Simons. “This case should ship a sturdy message to businesses that they may face stiff effects if they use deception to trick clients into buying luxurious services they will not want.”
At the center of the FTC’s grievance is a PC Health Check application, Support.Com, provided to Office Depot (which merged with OfficeMax in 2013) from 2009 to 2016. According to the FTC’s criticism, this system becomes marketed as a PC check-up and tune-up provider to enhance performance and test for viruses.