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Mary Jo Walker EA Madison, CT

IRS Phone Scam Warning – Please Read!

The IRS does not initiate phone calls and demand payment via prepaid credit cards, Debit Cards or ask for PINs, passwords or similar confidential access information for bank or other financial accounts.

We’ve said this before but it’s worth another strong warning.   Please take care to guard against sophisticated and aggressive phone scams targeting taxpayers!

We  have recently received calls from some of our clients who have reported a particularly aggressive phone scam. Potential victims are threatened with deportation, arrest, having their utilities shut off, having their driver’s licenses revoked or liens placed on their home. Callers are frequently insulting or hostile – apparently to scare their potential victims.

Potential victims may be told they are entitled to big refunds, or that they owe money that must be paid immediately to the IRS. When unsuccessful the first time, sometimes phone scammers call back trying a new strategy.

Other characteristics of this scam include:

  • 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 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.
  • After threatening victims with jail time or driver’s license revocation, scammers hang up and others soon call back pretending to be from the local police or DMV, and the caller ID supports their claim.

If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS, here’s what you should do:

  • If you know you owe taxes or you think you might owe taxes, call the IRS at 1.800.829.1040. The IRS employees at that line can help you with a payment issue, if there really is such an issue.
  • If you know you don’t owe taxes or have no reason to think that you owe any taxes (for example, you’ve never received a bill or the caller made some bogus threats as described above), then call and report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1.800.366.4484.
  • If you’ve been targeted by this scam, you should also contact the Federal Trade Commission and use their “FTC Complaint Assistant” at FTC.gov. Please add “IRS Telephone Scam” to the comments of your complaint.



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Go Back to Get Ahead

The Go Back to Get Ahead initiative is for Connecticut residents who have some college credits but have not attained their Associate’s or Bachelor’s to return to the state’s universities or colleges to obtain a degree.  Eligible students will receive up to three free college courses.



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