What’s That On My Answering Machine?

We got a call last week from the IRS after scrambling to grab the phone. (After the call was picked up the machine stopped recording) The voice was saying there was a judgement against me and arrest was coming…

Antique rotary phone

Old Phone, by Doug. Creative Commons 2.0

Well, that’s enough to start a panic, even if I file returns as I should, the best I can. Then I worry of it’s one of my roomates, the caller wasn’t a real person and I couldn’t even find out who they were calling. Then I remember that the Feds don’t do nothing without reams of paperwork, and dismiss it.

The third day of calls, I’m starting to worry despite the warning bells. And the lack of identifying information for the supposed tax-crook is really suspicious. But.. this is the IRS, not known for being sunshine and happy bunnies. A friend’s father had a stressful problem and lawsuit once. So I look for the local IRS office to confirm they aren’t calling us. No, I would not call a random toll number that isn’t even plausible as a major IRS office. (Surprise, the local office does NO phone business, only walkup) So I find a major metro IRS help line and she confirms that they don’t do that kind of thing by phone. I didn’t have any information written from the calls to tell her, but she mentioned the wave of impersonation calls right now.

Two days later, and we’s still getting ‘last chance’ calls. The Better Business Bureau  and other news sources are warning people about this scam. This wave of scammers pressure their victims to pay now or a warrant will be issued. The calls include an agent number and case number to make the recording to sound real. The scammers will accept wire payments or plastic to prevent arrest.

If you did that, the money’s probably gone forever.

If you’ve received these calls, contact the Treasury Inspector General and report the details. I know I’d love to hear about the snots who are doing this, getting put away for enforced public service wearing neon pink or orange jumpsuits in the heat. That kind of fear-mongering would have sent Mr Sanford up to his Elizabeth, and I don’t want that to happen to my elders or friends.

 

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