'Sharon' was not calling from Microsoft. Judging by her accent, she was probably phoning me from India. That is the heartland of this phone-based computer scam.
'Sharon' is a con artist. In the old days, people like her would have to knock on your door or waylay you in the street, in order to confidence trick you into giving them access to your bank account.
These days, they can do it remotely via your PC.
But first these con men and women need you to give them permission to log onto your computer, then follow your trail all the way to your bank. That is where the phone call comes in.
Had I let 'Sharon' get up to speed, she would have tried to convince me that there was a problem with my PC. Perhaps the Microsoft team had been alerted that some criminal was trying to hack me, or I'd inadvertently downloaded a virus, during my usual internet browsing.
It doesn't matter what the supposed issue is. The aim of the game is to make me think that my computer is somehow posing a danger to myself or the whole of the World Wide Web.
But the Microsoft Tech Support team cares about me! So they will fix it! All I need to do is follow these simple instructions...
What that would do is allow the people on the end of your phone the ability to remotely control your computer. They could use that to farm information with which to target your friends and family, or add e-mail addresses to spam lists.
The main goal, of course, is to add in a keylogger - a way of compromising your computer, so that it records everything you do using your keyboard (and/or mouse) - then next time you visit your internet banking, bam! They have you.
Now they can empty your bank accounts with impunity.
They'll probably even bill you beforehand for their services, in order to force you to quickly log into your bank account. No con artist likes to be kept waiting.