Because Lindemeyer CPA values the protection of taxpayers’ personal information we want to pass along some information regarding recent phone calls made by con artists posing to be IRS agents.
The IRS issued a consumer alert several days ago to help protect taxpayers from con artists posing as IRS employees demanding immediate payment of taxes owed. The callers may demand money or say you have a refund due and attempt to trick you into sharing private information. These callers may even have personal information about you and might alter the caller ID to appear as if the IRS is calling. Fake names and bogus IRS badge numbers are always given and if you do not answer urgent requests to call back are left.
“These telephone scams are being seen in every part of the country and we urge people not to be deceived by these threatening phone calls” IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said. “We have formal processes in place for people with tax issues. The IRS respects taxpayer rights and these angry shake-down calls are not how we do business.”
The IRS is distributing a list of five things that taxpayers can use to spot these scammers. If any one of these five tactics is used during a phone call it is a tell-tale sign of a scam.
The IRS will never:
- Call you about taxes you owe without first mailing you an official notice.
- Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
- Require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes such as a prepaid debit card.
- Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
- Threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
Here’s what you can expect if someone from the IRS does call:
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 1.800.829.1040 and the IRS can help you with any payment issues.
- If you know you do not owe taxes or have no reason to believe that you do report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) at 1.800.366.4484 or www.tigta.gov.
- If you have been targeted by this scam also contact the Federal Trade Commission and use their “FTC Complaint Assistant” at FTC.gov. Please add “IRS Telephone Scam” next to the comments in your complaint.
Remember the IRS does not use unsolicited email text messages or any social media to discuss your personal tax issues. For more information on reporting tax scams go to www.irs.gov and type “scam” in the search box. There is additional information about tax scams available on IRS social media sites including YouTube and Tumblr where people can search “scam” to find all of the scam-related posts. If you need help with tax payment and information Lindemeyer CPA provides a secure and efficient way to manage your funds. Click here to set up an initial consultation and avoid the risks of potential scams.
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