175,000 whinge to Microsoft about phone tech support scams

3.3 million Americans will pay $1.5 billion this year.

Microsoft has received more than 175,000 complaints about phone technical support scams since May last year, and Redmond says the "Hello I'm Joe from Windows Technical Support" callers will filch around US$1.5 billion from Americans this year.

Redmond in response increased its education awareness through the American Association of Retired Persons' Fraud Watch department.

"Since May 2014, Microsoft has received over 175,000 customer complaints regarding fraudulent tech support scams," Microsoft cybercrime center director David Finn says.

"This year alone, an estimated 3.3 million people in the United States will pay more than $1.5 billion to scammers."

Finn says Microsoft has partnered with law enforcement officials and is holding more events through the AARP.

Tech support scams are not just targeting seniors however.

Popular torrent site KickAss Torrents this week was serving fake phone tech support advertisements urging pirates to call local virtual phone numbers.

The fake blue screen of death screens also served on other dodgy websites attempts to scare users into believing their machines are infected. ®

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