Trend in Imposter Financial Telephone Scams Noted
(LYNNWOOD, WA.) – The Lynnwood Police Department is
advising the community that it has seen a recent increase in the
number of imposter telephone scams occurring in this area.
“These scams are carried out by callers
to be from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or some other law
enforcement agency,” said a police statement issued today to
media. “Their goal is to steal money or identities from
victims. The Lynnwood Police Department urges you to remain
vigilant and protect yourself against these scams.”
scams include many variations:
Callers say the victim owes money or is
entitled to a huge refund.
Threaten arrest and threaten a driver’s license
Sometimes these calls are paired with follow-up
calls from people saying they are from the local police department or
the state motor vehicle department.
Imposters pose as an employee of any local, state,
or federal government.
These calls, whether they are claiming to
be from the IRS or not, can be very aggressive and threatening.
Characteristics of these scams can include:
Scammers use fake names and IRS badge numbers. They
generally use common names and surnames to identify themselves.
Scammers may be able to recite the last four digits
of a victim’s Social Security Number.
Scammers “spoof” or imitate the IRS toll-free
number on caller ID to make it appear that it’s the IRS calling.
Scammers sometimes send bogus IRS emails to some
victims to support their bogus calls.
Victims hear background noise of other calls being
conducted to mimic a call site.
If you get a call from someone claiming to be with the IRS
for a payment, here’s what to do:
If you owe federal taxes, or think you might owe
taxes, hang up and call the IRS at 800-829-1040. IRS workers can help
you with your payment questions.
If you don’t owe taxes, call and report the
incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at
You can also easily file a complaint with the
Federal Trade Commission at FTC.gov. Add "IRS Telephone Scam" to the
comments in your complaint.