The new tax fraud that has been affecting taxpayers around the country is a telephone scam where the callers pretend to be from the IRS. If you receive a call from the IRS saying that you owe taxes or that you are entitled to a large refund, do not share any sensitive information with the caller.
If you receive a call from the IRS and it is followed by calls from the police or any state department, you can be sure that the call is from scammers. You can also be sure that a call is from scammers if they threaten and intimidate you. You should write down the number from which the call was made and inform the IRS about the scam attempt.
Some of the characteristics that will help you to identify if a call is from scammers are:
- Scammers use fake names and IRS badge numbers. They generally use common names and surnames to identify themselves.
- Scammers may be able to recite the last four digits of a victim’s Social Security Number.
- Scammers “spoof” or imitate the IRS toll-free number on caller ID to make it appear that it’s the IRS calling.
- Scammers sometimes send bogus IRS emails to some victims to support their bogus calls.
- Victims hear background noise of other calls being conducted to mimic a call site.
Even though sometimes it might be difficult to judge whether a call is from the IRS or from scammers, keeping your information safe is necessary to spoil any scam attempts. Remember that they are looking to get money by stealing information. As long as you withhold information from them, you are safe.