Remember, the IRS will never do the following:
- 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, MoneyGram or other untraceable methods.
- Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone or email.
- Threaten to immediately bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
If you get a suspicious phone call or email from someone claiming to be from the IRS and asking for money or other personal information, here’s what you need to do:
- Don’t engage with the scammer and do not give out any information. Just hang up.
- If you receive a telephone message from someone claiming to be from the IRS and you do not owe tax, or if you are immediately aware that it’s a scam, don’t call them back.
- If you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be with the IRS, and you owe tax or think you may owe tax, do not give out any information. Call the IRS back at 1.800.829.1040 to find out more information.
- You can also contact Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) to report scam calls by calling 1.800.366.4484 or by using the “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting” form on their website. You may also want to report the scam to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by using the “FTC Complaint Assistant” to report persons pretending to be from the government; please add “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.
Also, you should never give out your Social Security Number (SSN) or credit card information over the phone. And, the FBI or the IRS will never ask for payment via Western Union, Moneygram or other money transfer services.