Police Warn IRS Phone Scams Are Heating Up

North Texas police departments are warning the public that aggressive phone calls claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service are rampant as tax day nears.

The City of Weatherford says citizens have been calling the police department to report people claiming to be IRS agents have called using scare tactics to solicit money for unpaid taxes.

It's a scam being reported throughout the country, that even topped the IRS's list of "Dirty Dozen" tax scams in 2015.

The Federal Trade Commission offers ways to recognize scam artists and keep them from stealing your money.

These scammers often:

  • Call you. But when the IRS contacts people about unpaid taxes, they do it by postal mail, not by phone
  • Use common names and fake IRS badge numbers
  • Know the last four digits of your Social Security number
  • Demand payment via a prepaid debit card or wire transfer. The IRS doesn’t ask for either of these payment methods, nor will they ask for credit card numbers.
  • Rig caller ID information to appear as if the IRS really is calling
  • Send fake emails that look like legitimate IRS correspondence
  • Make a second call claiming to be the police or department of motor vehicles, rigging the caller ID information

To protect yourself from impostors who call, claiming to be from the IRS:

  • Don’t provide any account or other personal information. Hang up the phone.
  • Never wire money to a person or company you don’t know. Once you wire money, you can't get it back.
  • If you owe - or think you owe - federal taxes, call the IRS at 800-829-1040. IRS workers can help you with your payment questions. You also can visit the IRS website at irs.gov.
  • If you’ve already paid your taxes, call and report the incident to TIGTA at 800-366-4484.
  • Forward emails from the IRS to phishing@irs.gov. Don’t open any attachments or click on any links in those emails.
  • File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at ftc.gov/complaint. Include "IRS Telephone Scam" in your complaint.

You can report potential fraudulent activity to the IRS by filling out a form online.

More: Report IRS Impersonation Scam | Most Recent Scam Alerts

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