Police Warn Public About IRS Phone Scams

By On March 26, 2014

Police have received several reports from Burbank residents about IRS-related phone scam attempts. Some of the reports are connected to identity theft, with individuals using another person’s social security number to report income to the IRS while others are phone scams demanding money for a purported tax bill.

BPD Patch -1A policeOn March 23 at 11:00 a.m., a Burbank resident received a phone call from a man who claimed to be with the IRS and he was trying to collect payment from her husband for past due tax bill of $1400.

If the woman refused to pay, the man said her husband would be arrested and deported, said Sgt. Darin Ryburn of the Burbank Police Department.

The woman requested documentation on the $1400 charge from the caller, which he refused to provide. She refused to pay and hung up the phone.

The suspect called the woman’s number five more times to demand money to settle the alleged debt. The woman then called Burbank police and gave them the number that the suspect had used to call her. She did not lose any money to the scam.

“By the time we track down the phone call, it’s usually from outside of the U.S. and we can’t do much about it,” commented Ryburn.

“This time of year we always have an increase in phone scams and identity theft related to income tax returns,” he added. “Numerous people have reported receiving phone calls from a person saying they’re from the IRS and they are past due on a previous year’s tax bill.”

The victim is directed to obtain a money order or a prepaid money card and call the suspect back with the number, Ryburn continued. The caller often threaten liens against property or other repercussions if the victim refuses to pay.

Police encourage people who receive such calls to try and get as much information as possible, an address to mail a check or any helpful identifying information. Police are working with Neighborhood Watch, media and other community programs to raise awareness on these recent IRS phone scams.