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Scammers Posing As IRS Agents Calling Area Homes


If you get a call from someone saying they are from the I-R-S and you owe them money...they're not and you don't. Danielle Rudd, the Communications Director for the Better Business Bureau serving Northwest Florida says that's the take home message about a series of scams going on in the region.

Scammers are calling homes and telling people they are from the IRS and demanding payment over the phone. The caller ID of the call has even been altered to show the call is from the IRS. If you get a call like that...hang up. It's bogus. End of story. But Rudd says it sometimes doesn't end there. Sometimes there is a second phone call from someone claiming to be a police officer with a warrant for your arrest unless you pay now. Again...HANG UP! No one from the IRS will ever contact you looking for payment on the phone.
No one is out to get you, no one is going to arrest you. All they want is your money or personal information.

The Better Business Bureau and other agencies have been dealing with scams like this all over the country. Locally there have been scammers posing as Gulf Power officials trying to get you to pay a bill on the phone. The scammers may even know some of your personal information already, like the final four numbers of your social security number.

No matter what, the thing to do is hang up. If you are still a little unsure, look up a number for the agency in question on line or in a phone book and call them yourself. You can also go to the Federal Trade Commission and file a scam report on line...or contact the local police and file a police report.

Bob Barrett has been a radio broadcaster since the mid 1970s and has worked at stations from northern New York to south Florida and, oddly, has been able to make a living that way. He began work in public radio in 2001. Over the years he has produced nationally syndicated programs such as The Environment Show and The Health Show for Northeast Public Radio's National Productions.