Woman avoids potential phone scam

Woman avoids potential phone scam

AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - A man claiming to be from Washington DC called Rachel Kramer's house this morning to speak to her father, and she took the call since he was at work.

"It didn't seem right, something didn't sound right," she says.

She says the call was from 202-751-2555, and the man on the other end of the phone said her father had problems with the IRS that needed resolved.

"He said that he's calling from the Tax Crime Investigation Unit from the IRS in Washington DC and it was very important that my father got back with them," Kramer says.

WFXG was there as she called the number back, and the man on the other end going by "Officer John Harrison" said there would be problems if Rachel's father didn't pay the outstanding fees.

"Within the next 15 to 20 minutes all your known banking accounts will be frozen, your social security number will be frozen or expired and the local authorities will be meeting at your doorstep with the investigation team of the IRS," he says. 

WFXG also called Mark Green, the media relations specialist from the IRS, and he says this is something they've been investigating since December.

"What you hear now is copycats who have taken one scam and tweaked it just enough so it sounds significant enough to lure taxpayers in to giving up money," he says. 

Rachel says she's grateful her mother didn't pick up the phone when the scam artists called.

"If someone says she owes them money, she's gonna pay it," Kramer says.

Rachel has some advice to anyone who may get a similar phone call.

"Just don't mess with them. Hang up and wait for a bill in the mail I guess," she says with a laugh. 

Green says the main thing to remember if you feel someone on the phone is a potential scam artist, just hang up and call the IRS as soon as you can

If you would like to call and report a scam you can call the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1-800-366-4484 or you can call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040. If you would like to see more information on how to avoid potential scams, head to the IRS website.

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