News From Terre Haute, Indiana

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March 20, 2014

Authorities: Scammers want payment for IRS

TERRE HAUTE — The Internal Revenue Service is warning people to watch out for scammers demanding immediate payment of taxes.

Scammers are calling people claiming to be with the IRS, including fake IRS indications on caller IDs, said Luis D. Garcia, an IRS spokesman. The callers demand immediate payment, warning jail awaits those who are not cooperative, he said.

The scammers in many cases even have the final four digits of victims’ Social Security numbers, Garcia said.

If no payment is arranged, the target of the scam will soon receive a second call with a fake law enforcement indication on caller ID, Garcia said. The caller claims to be a local law enforcement agent, he said.

The bottom line, Garcia said, is that the IRS does not work that way. Its agents do not threaten people with immediate arrest nor do they use vulgar language, as the scammers have been doing.

The IRS also does not ask you to make payments over the phone using a pre-loaded debit card, credit card or wire transfer, he said.

“This scam has hit taxpayers in nearly every state in the country,” said IRS Acting Commissioner Danny Werfel in a news release. “If someone unexpectedly calls claiming to be from the IRS and threatens police arrest, deportation or license revocation if you don’t pay immediately, that is a sign that it really isn’t the IRS calling.”

If you receive a call from someone claiming to be with the IRS and you think you might owe taxes, you can call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040.

If you receive a call and you know you do not owe any taxes, you can call the Treasury Department at 1-800-366-4484.

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