Town of Frederick News

Posted on: December 5, 2017

Scam Alert: Phone Scam Pretends to be IRS

Phone Scam Alert

Phone scams are back and are the method of choice for ID thieves as they can gather a lot of your personal information and money very quickly. These scammers pretend to be IRS agents and tell the victims they owe money and if they don’t pay it immediately, they’ll be arrested. Typically, they will call after hours or during times that aren’t convenient to contact the IRS for verification. Scammers use fake names and IRS badge numbers such as “Joe Williams” or “Mike Stanley” and any series of numbers to represent their fake badge number. They may be able to recite the last four digits of your SSN and will likely ask you to verify your entire SSN. Scammers will imitate an IRS phone number by “spoofing” it to make it look legitimate on caller ID. They may also send bogus emails to some victims to support their calls. If you don’t pay then the scammers will hang up and call back pretending to be the police or the Department of Motor Vehicles threatening arrest or revocation of your driver’s license.

The IRS doesn’t initiate contact with taxpayers by phone or email to request personal or financial information. Their official form of contact is by letter through the United States Postal Service.

If you believe you are at risk of identity theft due to lost or stolen personal information, contact the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit at 1.800.908.4490. For more written and video information about tax scams and consumer alerts, go to: https://www.irs.gov/uac/Tax-Scams-Consumer-Alerts.

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