Clinton police have received several reports across the community in recent days of a phone scam from people purporting to be from the Internal Revenue Service and requesting “back tax payment” under the threat of arrest.
“They are using police department and City Hall numbers (on Caller ID) to make calls,” Clinton Police Chief Jay Tilley said. The department posted a message to its Facebook page late Monday afternoon and followed that up by putting out a citywide call warning of the scam.
Many citizens of Clinton are receiving recorded messages that claim that the call is from the IRS, with the message specifically stating the recipient is delinquent in payment of their federal taxes and must pay immediately or be arrested.
“It’s bogus,” Tilley stated Monday. “These people are representing themselves as IRS on these recorded messages. This is a fraud in an attempt to steal your money.”
Tilley said those receiving such a message are urged to ignore it and not call back. If the caller is a person, then the resident should tell them to send written documentation and then hang up.
“Do not provide personal information, credit card information or send money,” the department warned in its notice. “If the IRS or any other legitimate company has business with you, they will send written documentation stating their claim.”
Tilley pointed to that as a red flag that residents should know about.
“If it’s the IRS you should be getting written documentation,” Tilley noted. “Also, don’t always believe the Caller ID. There are ways to manipulate it.”
Anyone with questions or to report an incident of the scam, call the Clinton Police Department at 910-592-3105.
Reach Managing Editor Chris Berendt at 910-249-4616. Follow the paper on twitter @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.