Beware of IRS scam

Published 1:19 pm Saturday, January 31, 2015

To the Editor:

Well, it’s a new year and tax time is coming up and the scammers are alive and well! I just received my second phone call of the year with the female caller saying (with a very heavy Asian Indian or Pakistani accent) that she was calling from the Legal Affairs Section of the U.S. Treasury Department. The first time I told her I did not believe her and that I was going to hang up, which I did. Today I told her I was very busy, but I would call her back later today if she would leave me her number. She said she was calling from 202-821-0055. I know 202 is in Washington, D.C., but I simply could not believe the Treasury has hired someone with such poor English speaking skills. At the suggestion of a local business person, I looked up the number in a Google search and here is what I found on the Internet.

This is a Pakistan—or India—based IRS scam. Do not fall for it. The IRS does not initiate any legal action via phone.


As general background information, here are a few things you can do:

1) Report it to TIGTA under, especially if you have become a victim (lost money, gave personal information, etc.). You can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at (include “IRS Telephone Scam” in your complaint). This way you can also help the government establish specific fraud patterns.

2) Help kill their phone lines, but not by calling them back directly (the number may be spoofed and repeat calls by you may — under exceptional circumstances — amount to harassment). The scammers use voice over IP lines (e.g. magicJack (Ymax corporation)) to make it seem as if they are calling from the U.S. This is always against these companies’ terms of service and can lead to immediate termination of their contract and blocking of their IP addresses for future attempts to register. Do a reverse look-up of their telephone number (e.g. to identify the Voice over IP provider and report it to the company and/or law enforcement (local police and/or state attorney general)

3) If you are really annoyed: call or write to your representative in Congress. As these scams happen all over the country, maybe this will trigger a reaction and provide U.S. law enforcement agencies with the political backing and the resources they need to work in India and Pakistan together with local authorities (it can happen, read: … mmission-320427). A U.S. task force has already been set up in Jamaica to nab scammers there (see

Perhaps your readers will find this information useful, if you can find space to print it.

Ash Cutchin
Courtland, Va.