IRS Scam Calls

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IRS Scam Calls

What is an IRS Scam Call?

An IRS Scam Call is when scammers make unsolicited calls. These scammers call taxpayers claiming to be IRS (Internal Revenue Service, the revenue service of USA) officials . They demand that the victim pay a fake tax bill and they con the victim into sending cash  through a prepaid debit card or wire transfer. Sometimes they leave “urgent” callback requests through robo-calls or via phishing emails.

What methods do the scammers use?

  • Scare the victim
  • Caller ID Spoofing
  • Phishing Emails

Scaring the Victim

Many of the phone scammers use threats to intimidate and bully someone into paying the fake tax bill. They may even threaten to arrest, deport or revoke the license of their victim if they don’t get the money.

Caller ID Spoofing

Lots of the scammers often change their caller ID to make it look like the IRS or another agency is calling. The callers use IRS titles and fake badge numbers to appear legitimate. They may use the victim’s name, address and other personal information to make the call sound official.

Phishing Emails

Some scammers use emails that contain fake IRS documents with a phone number or an email address for a reply instead of directly calling the person. The scammers may use the victims personal information to make it look legitimate.

How much money have these scammers accumulated?

The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) has received reports of about 736,000 scam contacts. Close to 4,550 victims have paid a total of over $23 million as a result of these scammers.

Who do they usually victimize?

The first scammers used to attempt to sting older people, new US immigrants and those who speak English as a second language but now the crooks try to con just about anyone and they’ve ripped-off people in every state in the nation.

Whats the difference between a scammer and the IRS?

There are a number of differences between these two and knowing these differences will definitely prevent you from being scammed.
The IRS will never:

  •  Call you to demand immediate payment.
  • Call you if you owe taxes without first sending you a bill in the mail.
  • Demand the payment of your taxes and not allow you to question the amount you owe.
  • Require that you pay your taxes a certain way, they will always give you the choice of payment. For instance, require that you pay with a prepaid debit card.
  • Ask for your credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
  • Threaten to get the police or other agencies to arrest you for not paying.

How do I prevent this from happening to me?

If you don’t owe any taxes or have no reason to believe that you have to pay taxes then don’t give out any information and hang up immediately. Even if it the IRS and you hang up on them you won’t get into trouble so there are no risks but it’s best to make sure so give the IRS a call and check if you have any tax due or to report the call. If you do owe tax or think you do then instead of taking the call, rather make the call. So if you get a call for your taxes whether its the IRS or a scammer rather hang up and call the IRS just for security reasons.

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