Scam alert: IRS impersonators targeting East Texas seniors - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Scam alert: IRS impersonators targeting East Texas seniors

Impersonation telephone tax scams are once again in the area. (Source: KTRE Staff) Impersonation telephone tax scams are once again in the area. (Source: KTRE Staff)
Impersonation telephone tax scams are once again in the area. (Source: KTRE Staff) Impersonation telephone tax scams are once again in the area. (Source: KTRE Staff)
Melba Little shares with a friend the time someone impersonating her granddaughter tried to scam her. (Source: KTRE Staff) Melba Little shares with a friend the time someone impersonating her granddaughter tried to scam her. (Source: KTRE Staff)
Accountant Gary Johnson says the best defense is to hang up.   (Source: KTRE Staff) Accountant Gary Johnson says the best defense is to hang up. (Source: KTRE Staff)
NACOGDOCHES COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Scam artists are at it again.

The one showing up the most is the Internal Revenue Service impersonator scam. Accountants are already putting the fears of alarmed clients at ease, not over taxes, but rather bogus phone calls.

“I did happen to come across a recording of one of those telephone calls,” said Gary Johnson, a CPA. “Let me play it for you."

Johnson played the recording.

“Hello, we've been trying to reach you,” the person on the recording said. “This call is officially a final notice from the IRS Internal Revenue Services. The reason of this call is to inform you that the IRS is filing a lawsuit against you."

An impersonator makes the claim, not the IRS.

“I try to assure them that the IRS does not do business this way and just go on with life and forget about it,” Johnson said.

The impersonations can worry seniors. It saddens them. It makes them mad.

“Yes it does. It's unfortunate that seniors are victimized on a frequent basis,” said Thomas Hughes, a senior citizen. “Unfortunately, I think over the years, senior citizens have lost millions of dollars due to similar scams."

Melba Little was called not by an IRS impersonator, but by someone claiming to be her granddaughter.

“I know my granddaughter's voice, and I know she does not call me grandma,” Little said.

Little said she tries to stay ahead of the scammers' game.

“I like to look at who is calling to begin with and if it's an unknown number I'm very leery,” Little said.

“They have ways of falsifying the caller id and it will say IRS on it,” Johnson said. "They'll use tactics like we're going to take away your driver's license and then hang up and 15 minutes later the ID will say some DMV."

Bob Overbeck knows the best defense move.

“I just hang up,” Overbeck said.

The IRS provides consumer alerts about tax scams. Click this link to see the video from the IRS:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0y5z0kWgBcM       

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