It's Tax Time! Don't Get Scammed
Whether your taxes are finished or you plan on waiting until April, it’s important to be aware that IRS scams are as prevalent as ever.
Even though these scams have been around for years and seem to be rather well-known, the Vernon Hills Police often receive calls from unsuspecting residents. Many times the resident has heard about the scams, but nevertheless became concerned the first time a call was received. In addition, sometimes the caller ID is spoofed to make it appear as though the IRS is actually calling. And it’s not only individuals who are called. Businesses have also been known to receive these types of calls.
"It's normal to be frightened the first time you receive one of these calls, but do not be intimidated," said Crime Prevention Officer Kim Christenson. “The number one thing to remember is to just hang-up at the first reference to the IRS and not tell the caller anything. If a message is left, do not call back.”
The following tip-offs were taken from the IRS web site. The IRS will never:
- Call to demand immediate payment over the phone, nor will the agency call about taxes owed without first having mailed you several bills.
- Call or email you to verify your identity by asking for personal and financial information.
- Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
- Require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card.
- Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone or e-mail.
- Threaten to immediately bring in local police or other law enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
The Vernon Hills Police Department reminds everyone to call 911 immediately if you are at all concerned after receiving one of these calls. The IRS can also be called at 800-829-1040.