IRS Scams On The Rise Again At Tax Time

The Iowa Attorney General’s office is alerting consumers to beware a long-running nationwide scam that continues to target Iowans with threatening calls. Attorney General Tom Miller says the IRS scam involves live callers or robocalls purportedly from the IRS regarding supposed back taxes or unpaid penalties. Callers threaten victims with arrest or court action if they don’t pay immediately through pre-paid debit cards, wire transfers or money orders. Criminals often spoof caller-ID devices to display bogus numbers or even legitimate IRS phone numbers. This is one of the longest running and most pervasive scams this office has ever seen, Miller said. On a daily basis, Iowans continue to lodge complaints to the Consumer Protection Division about threatening calls from aggressive people who claim they are with the IRS. According to the IRS, the agency generally contacts taxpayers about unpaid taxes through the mail, not by phone and they would never request personal or financial information by email, text message or social media. If you get a call like this, hang up the phone, Miller said. Do not discuss anything and if you have concerns or questions, call the IRS at 800-829-1040. Consumers who receive the call do not need to notify the Consumer Protection Division.