IRS scammers get $10,000 from local people

Originally published June 30, 2016 ASHWAUBENON, Wis. (WBAY) - Ashwaubenon Public Safety is asking the public to help get the word out about the IRS scam to people of Middle Eastern or North African descent, who seem to be the most vulnerable to the scam in our community.

The Public Safety Department says more victims came forward in the past few days saying they fell for the scam, and together they're out more than $10,000.

As we've reported many times, people are receiving phone calls from people claiming to be with the IRS and demanding payment of "owed" taxes. The caller sometimes threaten arrest or deportation.

The victims were instructed to wire money from their bank accounts, and then told to pay $3,000 in Green Dot prepaid debit cards or gift cards, such as iTunes.

HANG UP ON THESE CALLERS. DO NOT GIVE THEM ANY PERSONAL INFORMATION. DO NOT ENGAGE THE CALLER.

The IRS will never call to demand immediate payment without first having mailed you a bill. The IRS will not threaten you. The IRS will never require you to use a specific form of payment, like a prepaid debit card, and the IRS does not accept iTunes or gift cards for payment.

If a person really owes back taxes, the IRS will contact them by postal mail. Ashwaubenon Public Safety Capt. Jody Crocker says, "If you are surprised to be hearing from the IRS, then you're not hearing from them."

If you aren’t sure if you owe money to the IRS, contact the agency toll-free at 1-800-829-1040.

IRS imposter scams be reported online at https://www.treasury.gov/tigta/contact_report_scam.shtml or toll-free, 1-800-366-4484.