Like somebody who has been in thisbusiness as mammals were however the new quadrupeds on the block, Ihave likely logged 3,000-plus hours with the phone with tech supportfor various companies. The pain threshold for those experiences hasalways been somewhere between having oral surgery without anestheticand attending a Justin Bieber concert without earplugs. Over the lastfew years, while, acquiring gear fixed has become much less painful,and the reason is easy: remote support. Letting the geeks bringcontrol of my PC above the Net and fix it although I watch haseventually made tech calls bearable, if not perfectly pleasant.

It is also a scenario that is ripe forabuse, which brings me to today's topic: iYogi, a remote tech supportcompany dependent in Gurgaon, India.iYogi supplies white labelend-user support for major tech companies as Dell and Microsoft. Iteven sells its services directly to individual users for $170 a year.How it goes about selling support, still, is not unlike how the Mobmarkets protection: through fear and intimidation.

One of the companies iYogi renderedsupport for was Avast, the maker of "freemium" antivirussoftware. Lately, Avast's customers began reporting that iYogi wasapplying support calls to aggressively sell annual subscriptions bytelling them their computers were corrupted when, in fact, they werenot. Brian Krebs of the Washington Post's KrebsOnSecurity blogdecided to investigate. He made a Windows virtual XP machine on hisMac, installed Avast, and called iYogi for support. Certainsufficient, the support tech detected serious matters on Krebs'machine, few of which could not possibly exist.

Krebs is barely alone. ITworld ThankYou for Not Sharing blogger Dan Tynan reports that an iYogi techattempted to convert him his computer was riddled on rogue programsthat were damaging his computer, when they were just standard Windowsprocesses and other programs running in the background. Later Krebs'article appeared, Avast "suspended" its apply of iYogi'sservices, pending improvements. Having been exposed to the harshlight of the Webbernets, iYogi is now applying the rogue salespersondefense, claiming this was the work of a few "overzealous"sales/techs who succumbed to the lure of sales commissions.

The trouble on that argument is iYogihas been "overzealous" for years, but a fair amount of timeand energy went into trying to cover it up. Google "iYogi,"and once you get past the dozens of links that drive you directly toiYogi, you will detect similar complaints stretching rear at leasttwo years.