Education

Breathe Easier—Know the Facts about IRS Scams

By January 19, 2017 No Comments

It is not uncommon during tax season—and even in the off-season—to receive phone calls or emails from what appears to the be the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The reality is, the IRS will not call you, they will send you a letter in the mail. Learn how to recognize IRS scams and keep yourself safe from online fraud.

It is not uncommon during tax season—and even in the off-season—to receive phone calls or emails from what appears to the be the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The reality is, the IRS will not call you, they will send you a letter in the mail. Learn how to recognize IRS scams and keep yourself safe from online fraud.

The Scam

Someone posing as an IRS employee will call or email saying you owe money and that if you don’t pay you’ll be thrown in jail. The caller will then ask for your debit or credit card number or will insist that you send a prepaid debit card. Several of our very own Verve members have received phone calls from callers posing as IRS employees.

What You Should Do

These tips can help you stay safe from IRS scammers:

  1. Say “no” to requests for personal information. No matter who’s calling, you should never give out personal information over the phone. It’s just too risky!
  2. Check the mail. The IRS will not call you unless they have already sent you a printed invoice by mail. If you haven’t received an invoice in the mail, request one be sent to you.
  3. Hang-up if threatened. The IRS won’t require you to pay without first giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the charges. The IRS also won’t threaten to have you arrested or involve local authorities if you owe money.
  4. Report it. If you are being required to pay by credit card or prepaid debit card, haven’t received an invoice in the mail or are being threatened by the caller, report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration.

 

How Verve Can Help

Verve tries to help members by automatically putting a seven-day hold on suspicious checks. If you think you have been a victim of an IRS scam, call us at 800.448.9228, and a team member can help you address any concerns.

It’s Verve’s goal—in line with our guiding 7 Cooperative Principles—to provide education, training and information to help our members avoid financial scams and stay fit financially. Verve is committed to keeping our members educated when it comes to their finances by providing details on recent scams and ways to stay safe. Help keep your family and friends safe by sharing this information on IRS phone and email scams.