Have you received a phone call from the IRS? Chances are the person you spoke to is not employed by the IRS and is trying to scam you out of your money. IRS imposters are calling both land line and cell phone numbers, sometimes even "spoofing" actual government phone numbers by using technology to display a fake number on the caller ID. The imposters then demand payments on taxes be made by purchasing a pre-paid debit card.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) never initiates contact with a taxpayer over the phone, text message or e-mail. According to the IRS they will only contact taxpayers over the phone after paperwork has been mailed to a taxpayer and the taxpayer has provided a phone number.
Additional signs of an IRS imposter include:
-Demands that the taxes be paid immediately.
-Threats of arrest, jail or a lawsuit if the taxes are not paid immediately.
-Demands that the taxes be paid via pre-paid debit card or some other specific means.
-Uses a generic name and provides a "badge" number.
What can you do? The most simple answer is,hang up! Do not provide any information over the phone in any situation. If you believe you may owe taxes or have questions about your tax situation you can contact the IRS directly at 1-800-829-1040.
If you provide information to the caller or you wish to file a complaint you can contact the Treasury Inspector General by phone at: 1-800-366-4484. You can also go on-line to file a report (link included below) with both the Treasury Inspector General and the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC blog entry link will provide you with a sample scam voice mail and provide you with links to report the scam.
Also be sure to check out the Crime Prevention Page on our website in order to learn about other scams and fraud schemes and resources available to you on the internet.
If you have any questions about a scam or fraud or would like to speak to an officer about an incident which you feel is a scam or fraud, contact the Fitchburg Police Department at 608-270-4300.