Sheriff’s Office warns of resurgent ‘delinquent taxes’ scam
by Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office
March 3, 2014
The Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office issued a warning about a resurgent "delinquent taxes scam" circulating once again throughout the county.
Authorities say there were such calls circulating in November of last year, but are starting up again now because of the onset of income tax season.
Sheriff Rich Haskell said his office has received a number of reports from people in Rock Springs and Green River who have received telephone calls from people claiming to be agents of the Internal Revenue Service, demanding payment of delinquent income taxes.
The pattern is for the caller to insist on prompt payment through a credit or debit card or a wire transfer. If the person called refuses or begins asking questions, the caller often threatens a visit from law enforcement, arrest, arrest of a spouse, or a driver’s license revocation.
The callers use fake names and sometimes even provide a bogus IRS badge number. They may even know the last four digits of their intended victim’s Social Security number, all in an effort to make the swindle sound more convincing.
Genuine communications from the IRS begin with a letter, not a phone call. Other tipoffs that such calls are a scam include the following:
- Knowledge of the intended victim’s Social Security number or its last four digits.
- Recitation of the bogus IRS agent’s badge number.
- During the call, the sound of other, similar conversations can be heard in the background.
- The caller becomes rude and hostile and hangs up.
- Follow-up calls from a different person also claiming to be an IRS agent.
Sheriff Haskell made the following recommendations to those who receive such calls: If you actually owe on your federal income taxes or think you might owe, contact the IRS directly at 1-800-829-1040 to speak with a genuine official about your tax issues.
If you know you don’t owe any income taxes, call 1-800-366-4484 to report the caller to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration.