Don’t Get Scammed By ‘the IRS’ [VIDEO]

Worried man on phone

Don’t let scammers posing as the IRS take you to the cleaners. (Photo by Alon, Flickr)

A few weeks ago, I received a voice mail message that I needed to contact the IRS immediately or else I was going to be arrested. Since I file my own taxes, my first reaction was, “Oh no! What did I do wrong?” But then I remembered reading Catherine Ryan Hyde’s Allie and Bea, where a senior citizen is scammed by someone claiming to be the IRS and I thought, “I’d better investigate!”

In the novel, someone calls Bea and demands immediate payment for back taxes she supposedly forgot to pay. Without hesitation, she forks over her bank account information and soon finds all of her savings has been wiped out! Needless to say, I didn’t want to become this person. So I contacted the IRS and got the scoop.

First of all, the IRS doesn’t call people. If they do contact you about upaid taxes, you’ll receive a letter in the mail, not a phone call. Even if the caller knows part of your social security number and their caller ID shows a number from Washington, D.C., it’s a scam. This is not the IRS calling your digits!

So what should you do if you get this kind of call? Make a note of the phone number and any other information you can gather and do not pay over the phone. If you wire money or pay with a prepaid debit card, it is too late. The money is gone and you won’t get it back. After you hang up, contact the IRS at (800) 829-1040 or visit irs.gov to ask questions about your account.

If you do get scammed, report the incident immediately to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration. There you can fill out the “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting” form to supply all the details needed to pursue these criminals.

Finally, even though you may not have been scammed, please share this information with your friends, family, and colleagues so they are aware of this rising danger. You could ultimately help save them a lot of cash and heartache.

Advertisements

About Jathan Fink
Jathan is a journalist, philanthropist, and entrepreneur. He is also a travel junkie, foodie and jazz aficionado. A California native, he resides in Texas.

One Response to Don’t Get Scammed By ‘the IRS’ [VIDEO]

  1. Jathan Fink says:

    Reblogged this on Jadeworks Entertainment and commented:

    You work hard for your money. Don’t give it away to scammers. Learn key ways to identify fraud by those claiming to be the Internal Revenue Service.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: