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Don’t be taken by IRS phone scam

Marcy Sugar and Kathy Mitchell Creators Syndicate

Dear Annie: I would like to thank “B” for bringing attention to the telephone scammers who have been plaguing America.

I also would like to bring to your readers’ attention a scam perpetrated by people claiming to be from the IRS. I have received three calls from these people. The “official” recorded message is totally bogus. The caller threatened me with arrest for ignoring the calls. They instructed me to call a 202 area code, but it’s a private Washington, D.C., number, not the IRS. I have worked for a federal agency and know how things work. Please be aware of the following:

1. The IRS does not initiate contact by telephone. They use certified mail.

2. Legitimate government agencies have an 800 number.

3. The IRS will not arrest anyone over the phone. If an arrest is required, it will be after lengthy legal processes have been exhausted. You’ll know about it. Police agencies need a bona fide warrant to arrest people.

4. If you receive such a call, report it to the IRS at IRStigta.gov. Also notify your local police. – Knows Better

Dear Knows: Thank you for your expert advice. Calls pretending to be from the IRS can be particularly frightening for people who are so eager to cooperate that they give out personal financial information over the phone. Please, folks, be careful.

Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please email your questions to anniesmailbox@ creators.com, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 Third St.,Hermosa Beach, CA 90254.
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