South Lake Tahoe Police Warn Public of IRS Scam Phone Calls - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

South Lake Tahoe Police Warn Public of IRS Scam Phone Calls

Posted: Updated:

The South Lake Tahoe Police Department is warning the public of callers claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service. 

Police say they have received multiple reports regarding the phone scam to local residents.  

Police say the callers, who claim to be agents, tell victims they have a warrant for their arrest or owe taxes. The callers tell intended victims they must pay using a pre-paid debit card, credit cards or wire transfer. The scammers threaten those who refuse to pay with arrest, deportation or loss of a business or driver’s license.

The callers who commit this fraud often:

• Use common names and fake IRS badge numbers.

• May know the last four digits of the victim’s Social Security number.

• Make caller ID appear as if the IRS is calling.

• Send bogus IRS emails to support their scam.

• Call multiple times claiming to be the police or DMV and caller ID again supports their claim.

The IRS usually first contacts people by mail – not by phone – about unpaid taxes.  The IRS DOES NOT ask for payment using a pre-paid debit card, credit card, or wire transfer. 

If you get a call from someone claiming to be with the IRS asking for a payment, here’s what to do:

• If you owe federal taxes, or think you might owe taxes, hang up and call the IRS at 800-829-1040. 

• If you don’t owe taxes, call and report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 800-366-4484.

• You can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at FTC.gov. Add "IRS Telephone Scam" to the comments in your complaint.

• Do not give the callers your personal information

The IRS will never request personal or financial information by email, texting or any social media. Don’t open any attachments or click on any links in those emails.

(South Lake Tahoe Police Department contributed to this report.)

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