FREEPORT — Edward Alderman, who started operating Computer Tutor in 2007, has seen an upsurge in business as people work remotely from home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Alderman began to see an increase in calls for help beginning mid-March, when many people were sent home to work remotely by their companies in order to prevent spread of the disease caused by the coronavirus. He has had to fix network issues and help with printers and monitors.
As coronavirus cases have surged, so have the number of companies asking their employees to work from home, according to Forbes. Some 46% of American businesses implemented remote-work policies as of mid-February. While telecommuting has become more mainstream in recent years— the remote workforce grew 159% between 2005 and 2017 — when just 3.4% of Americans worked from home at least half of the time.
“The best part for me is the interaction with people, and seeing a smile when I am able to help them correct a problem,” Alderman said. “I love to fix problems that I am called for, and it is computers and conversation that makes my day.”
Alderman said the coronavirus has made him busier than ever, but there is a drawback. He said he sees people getting scammed while they work from home.
He said he gets calls from people who had a computer virus or were told that and also were told they had to pay money to get their computers fixed. The scams involved using their credit cards or having the victims buy gift cards to the tune of $1,000. Scammers had their victims buy gift cards from several retail outlets, and then the victim would read the codes to them on the phone.
“Computer scammers have been around for many years, and it had gone away