December 17, 2015
FREDERICK, MD – The Frederick Police Department would like to warn consumers about a phone scam targeting taxpayers. Victims are told that they owe money to the IRS and it must be paid immediately through a pre-loaded debit/credit card or wire transfer. Victims are then told that if they refuse to pay they will be arrested or their driver’s license will be revoked. Some victims are even called back by a person pretending to be from the local police department or MVA.
The IRS reminds people that they can know pretty easily when a supposed IRS caller is a fake. Here are five things the scammers often do but the IRS WILL NOT DO. Any one of these five things is a tell-tale sign of a scam. The IRS will never:
1.Call to demand immediate payment, nor will we call about taxes owed without first having mailed you a bill.
2. Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
3. Require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card.
4. Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
5. Threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS and asking for money, here’s what you should do:
• If you know you owe taxes or think you might owe, call the IRS at (800) 829-1040. The IRS workers can help you with a payment issue.
• If you know you don’t owe taxes or have no reason to believe that you do, report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) at (800) 366-4484 or at www.tigta.gov.
• You can file a complaint using the FTC Complaint Assistant; choose “Other” and then “Imposter Scams.” If the complaint involves someone impersonating the IRS, include the words “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.
Author of Release: Michele Bowman, Community Outreach Specialist
PIO Contact: Lt. Clark Pennington