The San Diego County District Attorney’s Office is alerting the public of a nationwide phone scam that is targeting San Diego County residents.
Callers are claiming to be the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), telling individuals they owe taxes and must use a pre-paid card or wire transfer to pay immediately. The fake IRS caller may also threaten the intended victim with statements such as “There is a warrant for your arrest” and “The police are coming now to your residence.”
The scammers often know partial information about the individual they are calling, such as the last four digits of their social security numbers. They often call a second time pretending to be the police department, supporting their bogus story of enforcement if money is not paid, and they send follow-up bogus emails.
It is important to note that the IRS will never request personal or financial information by e-mail, texting or any social media.
How to avoid becoming a victim of this phone scam
If you receive a suspicious call from someone claiming to be with the IRS asking for a payment or wanting to send a refund, here’s what you do:
- If you think you owe federal taxes, call the IRS at 800-829-1040. IRS workers can help you with your payment questions.
- Call and report the incident to the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) at 800-366-4484.
- You can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at www.FTC.gov. Add “IRS Telephone Scam” to the comments in your complaint.
- The IRS will never request personal or financial information by e-mail, texting or any social media. You should forward scam e-mails to email@example.com. Do not open any attachments or click on any links in those e-mails.