Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Bad Start to a Busy Weekend!
I checked his computer, and when I opened his Anti-virus program, I immediately noticed three things: the program icon was not on his tool bar; there was a notice that his anti-virus was inactive, as was his identity theft protection. This did not bode well.....I clicked where it said "click here to activate," and a window popped up which stated the software could not be activated. Then the computer froze up.
I called the 800 number for the Virus Protection software and of course was told, "All lines are busy now. Your call is important to us. Please hold and someone will be with you in a moment." Cut to annoying music. The preceding message was repeated 30 seconds later, and every 30 seconds for about half an hour--I know it was every 30 seconds because I counted...one thousand one, one thousand two, etc., and only made it to one thousand 30 between messages. It is VERY annoying to be told every 30 seconds that someone will be with you in a minute for 30 minutes!
Finally, a man named Lloyd came on the line and took my name, my phone number, my date of birth, my shoe size, my eye color, etc., etc., and then asked what seemed to be the problem. I explained the situation, and he said, "I'm sorry I can't help with that, you will need to speak to someone on the help desk."
"This isn't the help desk? It said on the software to call this number for assistance; is that different than help?"
"I'm going to transfer you to someone who can help you. Please hold." And then I was back with the annoying music and the repeated "your call is important to us" messages every 30 seconds for another 20 minutes.
I forgot to ask Lloyd where he was, so when someone finally answered and told me his name, I asked him where he was, and promptly forgot his name. I did remember that he told me he was in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada. First he took my name, my phone number, my date of birth, my shoe size, my eye color, etc., etc., and then asked what seemed to be the problem. I explained the situation, again.
He was very pleasant and tried his best to help. He tried to uninstall the anti-virus protection program so he could re-install it. Uninstalling took about 15 minutes or so, then re-installing took about 30 minutes. In the mean time we chit chatted about like, our grandkids, what to do if you encounter a bear in the woods and other valuable bits of information. By now it was about midnight. The installation of the anti-virus program failed.
"I'm going to have to transfer you to a 'tech budy.' Please hold."
Back to music and moronic messages for 20 minutes.
"Hello, my name is Alfon. May I have your name, phone number...." And once again I gave all the pertinent information and some that probably wasn't so pertinent, but I was getting the hang of this, now. When I explained what had transpired so far, Alfon said he wanted permission to take over my computer;. (at this point I would have paid him to take the darn thing and park it where the suns rays are not seen!)
The anti-virus protection we have on our computers is free. We've used the same protection for years without difficulty. However, Alfon announced, "I have very bad news. Your computer is severely compromised by several of the absolute worst viruses, and for me to be able to solve the problem, you will need to upgrade to our premium plan."
Naturally, there was a cost for the "premium" plan, and after giving Alfon the necessary credit card information, I watched him navigate my computer , fascinated with today's technology. By now it was 2:15 a.m.,. and I mentioned to Alfon that he was keeping me up considerably later than my usual bed time.
"If you want to go to sleep, go ahead. This is going to take me a couple of hours. If I need you, I'll call you."
So I trudged of to bed, gratefully resting my head on the pillow and was asleep within minutes, I'm sure. Then, as I was dreaming sweet dreams, I was jolted awake by the ringing of the phone on my nightstand.
"Eva, I need you to shut down and restart your computer manually; I seem to be unable to do so from here."
I trudged down the hall in my nightie and proceeded to do as he asked, yawning all the while. "What time is it?" asked Alfon.
:Four a.m., I answered."
Oh, gee, you're in Maine! I'm sorry. It's four o'clock in the afternoon here in the Philippines!"