How to Look Out for Automated Calls that Pretend to be the IRS

Anytime you receive an angry, shake-down call from someone claiming to be the IRS, you are likely dealing with a telephone scam artist.

The Internal Revenue Service, IRS, has provided many tips over the years on how to deal with scammers and this is a collection of the best ones.

According to the IRS, it is fairly easy to determine whether a caller is fake or not. There are five things that the IRS will never do:

  • Call about taxes owed without having mailed you a bill first or call to demand immediate payment
  • Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they claim you owe
  • Require you to pay by prepaid debit card or any other specific payment method
  • Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone
  • Threaten to have you arrested for not paying

If you think that you owe taxes or are not sure, you should call the IRS at their toll-free number to speak with a representative to resolve your issue. It is also important to remember that the IRS will never approach you via unsolicited email, text messages or any form of social media. Anytime you receive a voicemail with an “urgent” call back request, that is a tell-tale sign of a scammer even if they state that they are with the IRS.