Last week, stationery retail giant Office Depot was discovered recommending unnecessary PC repairs to customers, citing ‘symptoms of malware’ even on brand-new computers purchased at its own stores.
Seattle-based KIRO TV News, which first reported the story, noted that those repairs could cost as much as $180 and the diagnosis had no basis in reality. What’s worse is that Office Depot claimed to conduct roughly 6,000 PC health checks a week.
Thankfully, that seems to be coming to an end. Ars Technica reports that Office Depot and its sister chain OfficeMax will no longer use the dubious malware scanning software.
That’s a good move, but it’ll be a while before Office Depot can be trusted with PC maintenance services again.
The PC Health Check software it used is sold by Support.com, a partner of AOL that was ordered to pay $8.5 million to settle a lawsuit alleging that the firms misrepresented the results of free malware scans and then charged fees to fix the problems that they claimed to find.
In addition, US Senator Maria Cantwell is said to have asked the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to investigate Office Depot’s computer repair service and learn whether the company broke American standard trading laws.