Kelly Hamlin says when the phone rang, she was certain it would be a stranger, but never expected to hear this.
“We are from the criminal division of the IRS. You owe us 15 thousand dollars. If this issue is not resolved, right now, immediately, in two hours there will be a sheriff on your doorstep,” Hamlin said of the frightening call.
Hamlin said she was told she would be arrested if she didn’t at least pay a portion of the money owed.
Initially she declined, but says the caller became aggressive, mentioning her daughter, tapping into her deepest vulnerability.
That’s when Hamlin, a single mother, says she gave into the fear, following instructions to go to Kroger, load 500 dollars onto a Google card, then transfer the funds to the caller, ultimately giving up a thousand dollars.
But Hamlin is just one of many with Michigan ranking in the top 10 for the most people to fall victim to irs impersonation by phone.
The latest ploy according to the Detroit IRS Field office is fraudsters compromising your information, then filing false tax returns using tax payer’s information. A refund will be issued going back into the taxpayer’s bank account, followed by a demand that the taxpayer refund the money, without the taxpayer realizing it’s a sham.
E-mail spoofing, the office says, is another big problem.
“Every day people are falling prey to these phishing schemes,” said Manny Muriel, Special Agent In Charge at the Detroit IRS.
Emails are beginning to look more and more like the…