In this section we will be discussing the common IRS Phone Scam which takes place in the US daily. These scams have cost the US public an enormous $23 million which was uncovered by an official Government report – so it’s well advised to stay on guard at all times.
How it Works:
You will receive a call from a person who claims quite convincingly that they are from the IRS and will claim that you have unpaid taxes or that you own them money. They commonly attempt to make you pay a “bogus tax bill” which you do not own. They con you into paying them cash believing you are paying the real IRS but in reality you are paying scammers your hard earned cash.
What you can do:
The simplest thing that you do is to simply disconnect the call and also consider reporting the number to the authorities. You may also wish to report the number to the TIGTA or the FTC. You can contact them through their individual websites.
What if you have been scammed?
Firstly, the best advice is to simply not panic and simply attempt to remain calm during the process. Report the call to your local Police Department and contact TIGTA and the FTC. If you gave them, you Credit Card information you must contact your bank and disable the card. You may also be able to claim money back if you do this immediately after the incident.The process however will take a few days to weeks. If you have any information about the scammers, please do not hesitate to report it to the Police. Even if the information is fake it could be useful in gathering evidence against them.
I.R.S. Scamming Tactics
Much of this is the same as traditional Tech Support Scams. They will attempt to intimidate you and scare you into paying. Much worse they will often claim they will arrest you or deport you or even revoke your licence. This is all of course outright lies to get you to cough up and pay them.
Voicemail Robots Scam:
One Typical I.R.S. Scam is scammers leaving voice mails on your machine claiming to be from the I.R.S. and when you call the number back it wants this personal information such as your Social Security, Address, Things of the nature. You should NEVER give your personal information out over the phone to people you don’t know. Especially your Social Security. The I.R.S. Never does cold calls saying you owe money. It would always be done by mail.
This is something scammers will typically use to make people believe that they are from the I.R.S. They will say the same usual claims that you owe x amount of money and If you don’t pay you will be arrested in x amount of time.
Somethings to look out for are as follows,
The sender: This is a very obvious way of telling if the email is a scam or not.
if the email does not match the official I.R.S email it’s a scam.
Grammar: This is something that is another huge giveaway, If everything in the email looks out of place or the whole email is caps lock this is a definite scam.
The “Agents” Name: Typically a scammer will put a fake agent name to make themselves look more legit when really it makes them stand out even more as a scam. If the agent’s name is “John Smith” or any last name of “Smith” it’s most likely a scam.
The Call Back Number (if there is one): Look at the country code, If the call back number does not match the official IRS phone number its a scam, and if the number is in another country. For example the number starts with +22 it’s definitely a scam.
Special Thanks to Ewan Birnie for his contribution of the articles on this page!
Stop Phone Scammers
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