Callers say they're from Microsoft. But they're scammers

Many people are getting suspicious phone calls from people claiming to be from Microsoft. They get you on the phone, and then they get control of your computer.

But the callers are not from Microsoft. They are scammers.

Shirley Luttropp and Elaine Daniel both recently got phone calls from a man claiming to be from Microsoft.

"They identified themselves as Windows tech support, calling me about how corrupted my computer was," said Daniel.

"He said there are problems with Microsoft updates (and) that I needed to turn on my computer and he would fix it," said Luttropp.

These types of phone calls have been going out for years. The caller has you download software that lets them take control of your computer, pretending it's to fix a virus or malware that doesn't actually exist.

"The minute that I agreed that was my number, they started manipulating the computer," Daniel said.

She said by the time she realized it was a scam and hung up, the scammers had messed up her computer so much she had to take it to a professional to get it fixed.

Still, she's lucky.

The scammers eventually get you to reveal your bank account information and your credit card numbers.

Luttropp wasn't fooled. She never even turned on her computer.

"I don't know you. I don't know your company, and I don't turn my computer on for anyone," she said she told the caller.

That's exactly what you've got to say. It's easy to fall for this scam, because the caller already knows so much about your computer when he calls. But Microsoft says it will never cold-call you like that. Unless you've called them first, anyone calling from Microsoft tech support or Windows is a scammer.

And if you've already been scammed by these people, call the attorney general and report it. The Better Business Bureau is already on this case.

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