Press release 05/19/2016
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Statement on TeamViewer’s Role in Windows 10 Activation Scam


Göppingen/Germany, May 19, 2016. Recently, some news coverage about a Window 10 activation scam surfaced. In the course of this particular scam, attackers use cunning techniques and disguise TeamViewer functionality through their own malware program.

While TeamViewer continues to look into this case, the current situation unfolds as follows: The aforementioned malware poses as a Windows Update, activated by the installation of an affiliate or adware bundle. Many users download these bundles because they come free of charge. The malware is then installed on the victim’s machine when they restart their system. Subsequently the program locks the infected device. After the affected users call a would-be support number and pay a ransom fee, a hidden functionality is used to launch TeamViewer QuickSupport. Presumably, so the perpetrator can unlock the device.


TeamViewer emphasizes the following aspects:

  • The real issue is the installation of a malware program: Once a system is infected, perpetrators can virtually do anything with that particular system – depending on how intricate the malware is it can capture the entire system, seize or manipulate information, and so forth.
  • Neither is there a TeamViewer security breach nor is TeamViewer a piece of malware: The depicted scenario is a heinous abuse of TeamViewer’s software that TeamViewer strongly condemns.
  • The perpetrators essentially automate the installation of TeamViewer QuickSupport: This does not make TeamViewer a malware or vulnerable program. In fact, this procedure can be applied to any number of legitimate programs such as TeamViewer. Thus far TeamViewer has no evidence that code of its software has been affected in any way.
  • Regular TeamViewer installations are not affected by this particular scam, and do not represent a security issue.


TeamViewer strongly recommends:

  • Users should avoid all affiliate or adware bundles: While users may think they are just downloading a harmless program, the software could in fact install something else. In many cases, this may just be an irksome browser extension; however, it may also turn out to be malware that can cause extensive damage.
  • Users ought to download TeamViewer only through the official TeamViewer channels.
  • Users should make sure to have reliable anti-malware and security solutions in place.


The TeamViewer support team is happy to answer any potential technical issues or queries at:

TeamViewer recommends that users who have been the victim of criminal activities get in touch with their local police departments, in order to report their case. This is particularly important because TeamViewer is subject to very strict data protection and privacy regulations, and can release sensitive data only to authorized individuals and authorities.


About TeamViewer

Founded in 2005, TeamViewer is fully focused on the development and distribution of high-end solutions for online communication, collaboration and remote monitoring of IT systems. Available in over 30 languages and with more than 200 million users worldwide, TeamViewer is one of the world’s most popular providers of remote control and online meeting software. airbackup, a powerful cloud-based backup solution, and ITbrain, a valuable remote monitoring and IT asset tracking solution, complement TeamViewer’s product portfolio.

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