Tax Scammers Are Hunting for Your Money

couple sitting on a white leather couch looking at tax documents with worried expressions on their faces

It may not be tax season, but taxes still haunt plenty of people across the nation, as fraudsters try new tricks to swindle victims.  The IRS recently presented a “Special Edition Tax Tip” warning consumers about fake phone calls.  Take a look at the following tips and reminders so you don’t become another victim.

What Could Happen

You’re resting at home after a long day of work, when you get an unsolicited call from scam artists pretending to be IRS officials….

  • The scammers change your caller ID, so it looks official.
  • They mention some of your personal information, so they sound like they know you.
  • They say you need to pay a tax bill and request immediate payment via wire transfer, prepaid debit card, or sending cash.
  • They try to scare you into paying the fraudulent tax bill (e.g. threatening arrest, revoking your licenses, or deportation).

Whether you think you owe taxes or not, be on guard for such tactics.

The Truth

  • The IRS doesn’t make phone calls demanding immediate payment or even requiring that you pay a specific way.  (They won’t even call you without sending a bill first.)
  • The IRS won’t threaten arresting you for not paying.

How to Proceed

  • If you don’t think you owe taxes, hang up the phone.  Don’t provide your information.
  • If you think you owe taxes, the IRS suggests calling 800-829-1040, so you can get help from a real IRS worker.
  • Report the phone scam to the TIGTA (Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration) by calling 800-366-4484 or visiting their web page, “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting.”
  • Inform the Federal Trade Commission of the phone scam by using the “FTC Complaint Assistant.”  (The IRS also suggests putting “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes, when you file the complaint.)

It doesn’t matter which state you live in, if it’s the middle of the tax season or far from it, if you’re old or young, new to the U.S. or lived here all your life.  The IRS says the phone scams hit “just about anyone,” and they happen year round.

Want to feel more protected when it comes to your taxes and your identity?  We take a holistic approach by protecting your money and your identity.  Members have access to Money Coaches (including trustworthy tax specialists, like an Enrolled Agent certified by the IRS or a CPA) who provide financial guidance, as well as Fraud Resolution Specialists™ who provide identity theft protection services.  For more information, call 888-724-2326 today.