This year, the tax season con-artists have really turned up their game.
In 2014 I wrote about the growing number of IRS scams.
In 2015, I explained how the fake IRS phone scam works.
In 2016, con artists are not only calling their marks and claiming to be IRS agents, they are also pretending to be local law enforcement officers, and even spoofing their caller ID to display 911.
“The IRS would never contact you by phone, or visit your house, or send you an email.”
Here’s part of an email I received this morning, from someone that had found my previous posts on this topic:
They called her with “911” on the caller ID, and identified themselves as the “San Diego Sheriff’s Department”. They then asked if she had been informed that the IRS had filed a tax complaint against her.
She hung up.
They called back and asked why she hung up on the police, and told her that they were sending a unit to her address.
She hung up again.
Of course the unit never arrived. I told her to call the sheriff and report it.
Every year, the IRS warns taxpayers about scams like this, and this year is no different: They’ve release this list of some of the most common tactics currently being used.
I’ve written before about how today’s popular scams are nothing new, they’re simply variants of cons that have been around for decades. With regard to this instance, 911 caller ID spoofing is relatively new, and recently this scam has been used to extort immigrants out of their hard earned money.
Today’s popular scams are nothing new, they’re simply variants of cons that have been around for decades.
911 caller ID spoofing is a very popular con at the moment, with stories reported across the USA.
It’s also highly illegal. In December of 2010, President Obama signed the Truth in Caller ID Act of 2009 into law. Under the act, it is illegal “to cause any caller identification service to knowingly transmit misleading or inaccurate caller identification information with the intent to defraud, cause harm, or wrongfully obtain anything of value….” Forfeiture penalties or criminal fines of up to $10,000 per violation (not to exceed $1,000,000) could be imposed.
The crime of impersonating an officer or federal agent is most often considered a felony, and punishments include imprisonment of up to 3-5 years and fines of $1000 or more.
My opinion on divorce, and how it changed.