Last week, the IRS issued a warning about a phone scam targeting taxpayers that has become increasingly pervasive throughout the U.S. The targeted individuals, including recent immigrants, receive a phone call to inform them they owe money to the IRS and that payment must be made using a pre-loaded debit card or wire transfer. If prompt cooperation is not given, the victims are threatened with arrest, deportation or suspension of a business or driver's license. "This scam has hit nearly every state in the country. If someone unexpectedly calls claiming to be from the IRS and threatens … if you don't pay immediately, that is a sign that it really isn't the IRS calling," said Daniel Werfel, acting IRS commissioner.
Additional characteristics of the scam include:
- Scammers use false names and IRS badge numbers
- Scammers may be able to provide the last four digits of a victim's social security number
- Scammers may spoof the IRS toll-free phone number on caller ID
- After making various threats, scammers hang up and others call back stating they are from the local police department or department of motor vehicles
As Weaver clients and friends of the firm, we want to make you aware of this scam and remind you that the IRS does not and will not ask for credit card numbers over the phone, nor will they request a pre-paid debit card or wire transfer. If you receive one of these calls, please report the incident to the proper authorities. (See link below for instructions.)
Visit the IRS website for additional details and instructions to report an incident, if needed. If you have questions about this scam or any other tax matter, feel free to contact your Weaver tax professional any time.