Crooks pocketed $21 million this year from 'Microsoft' scam

Contact KY3 has told you about this scam for years. It's gotten so bad, the Better Business Bureau issued an alert -- stating it's not a matter of if, it's when you get the call.

Hand typing on a keyboard.

We're talking about the Microsoft scam. This year alone, crooks have pocketed $21 million from consumers. Swindlers call and say they're with tech support. They've detected a virus on your computer.

"They're trained. They've done their research. They're out to get you," said Stephanie Garland, with the Better Business Bureau.

A new report, from the Better Business Bureau finds more than 80-percent of these calls come from India. India has a large English-speaking, educated population. Plus, for years, India hosts customer service work for telephone companies.

"It will appear to be a legit person that you are talking to. They'll have all the right codes and everything, but you just got to be very careful," Garland said.

If you get the pop-up, do not dial the number on your screen. Don't click on anything. Turn off your computer, phone or tablet.

"Turn off the battery. Make sure everything is off for five minutes. Turn it back on and your computer should be fine," Garland said.

Crooks want to install malware to gain access to your banking information.

Make sure your device has up to date security software.

Tech support does not make cold calls.

When in doubt -- look up the real tech support number. Call ask if there's a problem.