NEW TWIST TO IRS PHONE SCAM
SPOOFERS MIMIC IRS PHONE NUMBER
In this scam scenario, the taxpayer receives a phone call from a scammer impersonating the IRS and informs you that a balance is due the IRS and that the caller is prepared to process the payment over the phone. In some instances, the scammer is calling a parent informing him/her that their child owes the IRS. Keep in mind that scammers know much about you due to Facebook and other social media venues.
Assuming you are aware of such scams, you share your reluctance with the caller to provide your banking information. Here is the new twist! The scammer (criminal) uses telephone numbers that mimic IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers (TACs) to lure victims into paying nonexistent tax bills. The criminals have programmed their computers to display the TAC telephone number and claim to be calling from a local TAC office. To convince taxpayers, scammers would further direct them to a page on IRS.gov to verify the local TAC office telephone number and hang up and then call back a second time, therefore faking the Caller ID to appear to be the IRS office calling. After the taxpayer has “verified” the call number, the fraudsters would resume their demands for money.
The IRS reminds taxpayers that it initiates most contacts through regular mail and not by calls except for special circumstances such as when a taxpayer has an overdue tax bill or to secure a delinquent tax return. The Service further informed taxpayers that it does not (1) demand payment by a specific method, such as a prepaid debit card, gift card or wire transfer; (2) demand taxes without the opportunity to question or appeal the amount taxpayers owe; or (3) threaten to bring in law enforcement to have taxpayers arrested for not paying taxes.
TAKE AWAY: If you work with a tax professional, all such demands for payment of taxes should be referred to your tax professional who understands how the IRS’s collection process works and who can verify if a balance due is owed to the IRS.
Taxpayers should report the IRS phone scam or any IRS impersonation scam to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at its IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting site and to the IRS by emailing email@example.com with the subject line “IRS Phone Scam”.
If you would like to discuss your business or personal tax planning, tax preparation and other financial concerns with an experienced tax professional, we invite you to call 610-594-2601 today to make an appointment at our Exton PA CPA office to discuss your situation. You can also schedule a consultation at Click Here.