Town of Menasha, Wis.(WFRV)- The IRS scam, which has been billed as one of the largest scam to hit the United States, has found its way to a Town of Menasha resident. Town of Menasha Police were notified yesterday by a town resident that she had received a suspicious voicemail from someone identifying themselves as the IRS. The message went like this:
The issue at hand is extremely time sensitive. My name is Officer Peter French and the hotline number to my division is 253-617-3967. I'll repeat it. It's 253-617-3967. If you don't return the call and I don't hear from your attorney either then the only thing I can do is wish you good luck as the situation is about to be enforced on you. Goodbye and take care."
The phone number provided lists to the Tacoma, WA area. An officer called the number and spoke with a person, who had a foreign accent, and identified himself as Officer Gabrielle Santos of the IRS. He was unable to provide basic identifying information that any law enforcement officer would be able to.
According to officials, the IRS will typically send you a letter first if you owe some money and will never ask for you to pay your debt via a money order, pre-paid credit card or over the phone.
Other characteristics of this scam include:
Scammers use fake names and IRS badge numbers. They generally use common names and surnames to identify themselves.
Scammers may be able to recite the last four digits of a victim’s Social Security Number.
Scammers spoof the IRS toll-free number on caller ID to make it appear that it’s the IRS calling.
Scammers sometimes send bogus IRS emails to some victims to support their bogus calls.
Victims hear background noise of other calls being conducted to mimic a call site.
After threatening victims with jail time or driver’s license revocation, scammers hang up and others soon call back pretending to be from the local police or DMV, and the caller ID supports their claim.
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 1.800.829.1040. The IRS employees at that line can help you with a payment issue – if there really is such an issue.
If you know you don’t owe taxes or have no reason to think that you owe any taxes (for example, you’ve never received a bill or the caller made some bogus threats as described above), then call and report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1.800.366.4484.
If you’ve been targeted by this scam, 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.