During tax season we passed along IRS warnings about ‘IRS Phone Scams’ that seem to be taking victims all over the U.S. These scams are where, thieves make unsolicited phone calls claiming to be from the IRS and demand immediate payment via a prepaid card or wire transfer. Do not fall victim to the threats! The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration has received over 90,000 complaints about these scams. It is estimated that these thieves have stolen over $5 million from about 1,100 victims.
Here are few things to know about the IRS, in order to not become a victim;
- The IRS will first contact you by mail if you owe taxes, not by phone.
- The IRS never asks for credit, debit or prepaid card information over the phone.
- The IRS never insists that you use a specific payment method to pay your tax.
- The IRS never requests immediate payment over the telephone.
- The IRS will always treat you professionally and courteously.
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 800-829-1040. IRS employees can help you with a payment issue if you owe taxes.
- If you know you don’t owe taxes or don’t think that you owe any taxes, then call and report the incident to TIGTA at 800-366-4484.
- If scammers have tried this scam on you, 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.
We encourage you to be vigilant against phone and email scams relating to the IRS. Call Prudent Accountants or visit the genuine IRS website, IRS.gov, to learn your options to report such attempts.