News about rogue repair shops alarmed a lot of consumers, especially laptop owners and users. PC Pro readers wanted to identify rogue traders, along with Sky News, they launched an undercover investigation. Through the camera lenses, technicians were caught stealing passwords, over-charging for basic repairs, and scouring over private photos.
The Set Up
Problems with computer and laptop repair shops are increasing and becoming serious. So, Sky News launched an undercover exercise, identifying the culprits, and the reason why customers get a raw deal. The test involved a faulty laptop loaded with spy software. These devices were taken into different rogue repair shops for diagnosis. Spector Pro was programmed in the laptop for recording purposes, triggering screen snapshots and allowing a silent startup. Digiwatcher was also installed to secretly film anything that would occur on the machine.
The Undercover Exercise
In order to push through with the undercover, the team needed to create a fault in an ordinary laptop, loosening one of the memory chips. This won’t allow Windows to load. But, to repair it, pushing the memory chip into the slot and rebooting the machine would do. The laptop was also loaded with different data like documents, log-in details, holiday photos, MP3s and curriculum vitae. The only thing missing now are the targets, the rogue repair shops. PC Pro readers and Sky News teamed up in tracking down PC repair shops with bad reputations. Poor customer service was likewise expected.
Based on Recordings
The faulty laptop was brought to a repair shop that offered a free diagnosis. The spy software revealed extraordinary things, based on recordings. The technician immediately discovered the loose memory chip and pushed it back right to its proper position. The laptop was rebooted and repaired. However, the technician started to browse through the machine’s hard drive, opening a folder labeled as “private”. The folder was filled with holiday photos of one of the researchers, including intimate snaps while wearing a bikini. The technician stared at the pictures one at a time, and showed them to his co-workers.
Later on, the technician called the researcher, who was posing as a client and was told of further diagnosis. He said that the laptop’s motherboard was faulty and needed replacement, which normally costs 130 pounds, but going to bargain it at only 100. He logged off after more scouring. Surprisingly, another technician was caught searching through the hard drive, accessed log-in details and copied them with his own memory stick. Overall, these revelations are only caught in one of the rogue repair shops, and further investigations are yet to be revealed.