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The FTC fights international scams

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If you have a phone, you’ve probably heard from an IRS imposter — someone claiming you owe thousands of dollars and better pay up immediately, or else terrible things will happen. In the last nine months, more than 111,000 of you reported calls like that to the FTC, and dozens wrote blog comments about callers with South Asian accents posing as IRS agents. Your reports provide crucial information to law enforcement about scam tactics, trends and locations.

The FTC aggressively sues scammers who operate across borders and target people in the US with imposter schemes. For example, a federal court recently temporarily shut down and froze the assets of a tech support operation that directed people to call a boiler room in India for computer help, then pressured them to spend $200 to $400 for useless repair services. That case was one of a dozen similar cases brought by the FTC.

The FTC also works with agencies worldwide to boost cooperation against cross border scams. Next month, staff from the Commission’s Office of International Affairs will meet for the fifth time with industry, trade groups, law enforcement and tech experts to continue efforts to thwart fraudsters operating in India. A recent police raid on nine call centers in India shows the benefit of collaboration.

If you get an unexpected call about a “tax debt,” remember: if the IRS needs to reach you, it will send a letter. Don’t give the caller any financial or personal information, and don’t send payment by money transfer, debit card or iTunes card. Hang up, and report the call to the FTC and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA).


Tagged with: imposter, IRS, phone, scam


I get robo calls claiming to be from the IRS claiming I owe money when I know for a fact I don't

Shann, we signed up for and we don't get robo calls any more.

When the robo-call says it is from the IRS, threatens you if you don't call them back, and ends with "Have a blessed day", you'd hope people would figure out pretty quickly that it is a scam from one or all of those "hints". The calls themselves were an annoyance. However, I do know that many people were scammed into paying what they thought they owed the IRS. I feel for those people. I make a habit to NOT answer the phone now.

Google "NOMOROBO" the service is free,but A&T Mobile customer can not.

I received about once a week calls in reference to my computer and problems that I am suppose to be having. My answer to them is that I do not own a computer and never have. Sometimes it works and I do not hear for awhile. If I get them again what do I need to do. With computer problems calls and home security calls it does get aggravating. Thanks for any info you may give me. Thanks for your information that you put out for us. Sylvia

I had a call about my saying they were from Dell, computer makers do not have the resources to do these kinds of calls. The end of this story is i conned a con man and got the money trailed stopped and they didn't get theirs, I beat them out of it with Western Union's help!

I just got a call from someone posing as a Microsoft technician saying that my computer was compromised. I hung up on him and called back five minutes later and when he answered I said I was from Microsoft and he hung up on me. Two can play the same game.

That just happened to me. What should I do. I am not stupid, but they got me on this one. Who do I report this to

You can report it to the FTC at

I was scamed by microsoft and the FTC has done nothing !
the F T C is now just like the B B B , totaly worthless !

I did get strange messages from someone claiming to be an officer. Gave name. Think recorded message. Phone did have D.C. area code 202 i think. Said there was lawsuit against me & i better act rifht away or something bad was going to happen. Was scarey.

Thanks for the update. I have been a victim of these IRS calls where they "were getting ready to sue me".. I hung up on them but it still was disagreeable to hear that.

When you order a product you order one than they send two or more with a company that a lot of people order from how do you stop this I can recover But a lot of people can"t I don"t like it but when it comes form all over Like a pair of earrings that I order cheap seen some at wal-mart for a few dollars I get that same pair 23.00 dollars they charge your credit card so many things with number letters you don"t know what you are paying for. Thank you for your Call and please keep us in mind

Thank you to the FTC for all of thier hard work.

Yes, thank you FTC

Thank you for alerting me about these calls.

I was scam for lots of money and I didn't know know I CANT GET IT BACK AMD I KEEP GETTING CALL I JUST DON'T ANSER CALL

I was scammed for thousands. I had someone claiming to 've an investigator and could get my money back but I was going to have to pay 500. I was told that no you don't get your money back. I made the comment that the FBI is free and he said that they're worthless and won't do anything to help me.

I have been received phone calls since 2010 for false past due pay day loans, and being served or I can pay to make the case go away and now claiming I owe money to the IRS (which I do and I am diligently paying $200 a month towards) - I have filed complaint upon complaint upon complaint and nothing ever changes. I think it is real bull crap, you should have the technology to shut these guys down immediately. it is to the point now, that I do not even both reporting them because nothing ever happens.

I also been getting them calls and I just tell them, "I will wait on the letter from the IRS"!
And just hang up.

I received a call from DC that said I had issues and if I did not call a certain number, federal Marshals would come and get me. Somewhat scary but I could tell caller was trying to act very stern.

I received a call from an "IRS" agent who had a Middle Eastern accent claiming that I was a criminal and that the IRS was going to arrest me. (I do not owe any money to the IRS btw) I could hear she was calling from a call center, there was a lot of noise in the background.

This is also happening frequently from a New York # as well. Automated call even left a voice message about going to pick me up by law enforcement if I didn't respond in the next 24 hours to the call. Mid-eastern accents, noise in background of many other callers, etc. !! Quite sad that there are so many people making the same calls in these centers & bringing harm to others !!

Hi ,

Someone needs to look into asiandate. com which charges $4 per letter to talk with a lady who is supposedly single. They also operate antasiadate. com, latinadate. com and have African sister website too. The lady I was chatting with in Columbia I could see was in a relationship ok facebook. They also do these phone calls with a translator that can cost several hundred dollars in an hour. They chat with at least two men at the same time. They said they are anti-fraud but are the biggest fraud companies out there.

Ok, these are “scams” involving “impostors” - in 9 months 111,000 reported calls, and “schemes” involving one time payments . But what is it called when your ‘communication/cable/fios/satellite ‘ provider advertises something fantastic but it isn’t available in your area ‘but coming soon’ , and then you discover your “high speed internet” is only 1-4 Mbps- and every time you check the “speed” it’s less than 1 Mbps !!! And let me state that I know how to test the speed and have a desk top computer ( a major brand near ‘top of the line’).This is from one of the top 2 national tv/internet/phone providers. If I’m paying for 1-4 shouldn’t I expect 2Mbps sometimes ?- but every test is under 1Mbps. This is the same as a grocery store selling ground chuck as Sirloin. That’s at least ‘false and misleading’ advertising for ‘service’ for over 5 years and includes who knows how many consumers. There is likely 100,000 in my city being cheated daily . Furthermore,I only have internet service, which is advertised “starting at 19.95” -yet that applies only if it’s in a “bundle” - I actually pay 57 dollars a month for internet service that doesn’t even reach minimum download speed- 70$ gets everything- but I have a cell phone and don’t want TV. This is the same as selling me a car and including a stuffed donkey!

I know EXACTLY what you are dealing with and can guess with whom you're dealing! They are HORRIBLE!!! They violate every fed reg they can~ They LIE over the phone, in person & on your bill! Promos are often as fraudulent with intent , as they possibly could ever be! The DOJ recently charged "them" with violations but I DC'd my service with them, after 10 years of paying WAY too much for crap service, so I've not stayed current on their legal / litigation "on goings". They should not even be allowed to do business in the U.S.!

CTOption a finance company uses a bait and switch tactic to making money for you some automatic trading scheme that advertise 250 dollar start up and after you place info they switch intro fee to 500 dollars then 1000 dollars

We are seniors and now they have both land and cell numbers and we get at least 4-5 calls a week! The callers have american, middle eastern, and southern accents. The calls purportedly come from NE,S, SW, NW states in USA. We have been threatened with lawsuit, jail, & immedicate arrest if we do not pay up immediately. The call back numbers are bogus.

Don't answer calls from unknown numbers or numbers that are not on your contacts list. Don't call them back either, not a good idea. I've been getting scam calls for almost 2 years now. They used to come in very frequently, almost everyday. I was so frustrated. Followed my sons advise to block the numbers and never to answer. This has helped alot and I hardly get anymore...Thank God! An occasional one here and there now. Think they're getting tired of calling my number and get no response or are already blocked. Some people have answered and supposedly these scammers are very rude. No need to deal with that. Remember the IRS will never call and harrass you on the phone. Also it should help to get a private landline number if you still need to have a landline. I did and I haven't gotten one call on that line since! And always report the numbers to the FTC. Hope this helps!

Been getting these scam calls for almost 2 years! So sick of them already. I have many voice mail messages in my phone that I have saved in case I need them in the future to help capture these scammers. I've also sent you a list of many of the phone numbers I've gotten calls from. Here are a few more since July thru Sept: 206-823-3906; 401-710-2096; 818-665-7293; 213-440-2687; 818-665-7293; 213-440-2687; 646-568-1992. I keep blocking the numbers as I get the calls. It has helped. I really would like for these calls to stop once and for all and I really would like to delete the voice mails I have saved.

I get the same calls knowing I don't owe anything. I don't answer if they don't leave a message it wasn't important. Besides I have a call and IF BLOCKER that can scans all my calls way before I answer. This blocker tells me whose calling.

I use, and it works.

The best is that they are calling from India and copping a really bad american accent. The name of the agent is always something like John Black or Tom White and that they are with the IRS. Then they tell me that they are calling in the local "magistrate" to arrest me. LOL! Magistrate! If you ever get a live caller and fight them on it, they many times will start using foul language with full Indian accent and hang up. I have an Indian name so they even start cursing in Hindi and then hang up.

These thieves don't deserve your attention, Insult them, play with them, waste their time, and report them, eventhough our do not call list does nothing, don't give them the time of day. They are thieves, con-artists and scum of the earth

I got so fed up with officer Kevin Jones I did play with them. I called them back usually I do not get an answer but I did that day. I kept calling him back when he would hang up. Then a different voice answered n officer Jones didn't want to play anymore. Have not had anymore calls also told him I knew people n told him I would call my local sheriff n I did n they were shocked that I had an actual # that worked. We have to standup to these people n maybe some of these companies will go back in their cubies n hide

I got same call, and I don't owe anything either. I'm so tired of scams and teller-marketers. I just wait and check my voicemail to screen for legitimate calls.

I have received solo many calls its unreal.I've bought call block boxes but the calls just continue from new numbers but same voice

Great job nailing those guys in India and the US.

I have received many calls like these every day for the past several months,it gets old.Has anyone received one from a mediator who claims you owe Pay Day Loans$1,110.00 and then they'll call everyone in your family trying to squeeze money from them.

I have nomorerobo that stops all robo calls. Some calls come through but I do answer just to tell them they are lying and to come on and arrest me.

I NEVER answer calls that are restricted,unknown or blocked, calls for donations or solicitors, and I have a very nasty message on my phone saying just that...these calls never leave a message- they just hang up.

I am so glad that FTC is on top on this matter. I get hundreds of emails a day from balance due, levy, make arrangements to pay your debt. I am thankful that I am an employee and know from the information I read that these are all scams. So thanks again for all of your hard work.

I also have received calls on my land line saying that I am being sued. Frightening. It has happened twice in about two months. My calls came from a area code of 202 which seems to be from Washington DC.

Thank You FTC for your important work stopping this SCAM. Please also focus on Gurgaon Delhi and Kolkata area in India where there are numerous call centers doing this.

I know that you guys have your hands full but with the technology today and the "Do Not Call List". What are toy doing?

Hi to all you fellow consumers . I hope that you listen to FTC , and to someone like "cookiechrisp " there.
Hang up . Just hang up on those pukes. If you are newly on your own, new to this country, senior citizen --
that is to say, Vulnerable, they know it and you're a target. Please, just don't let them engage you in conversation. These types have NO conscience.
Don't be afraid to be "rude". You do not owe them Your time nor any conversation. Nor "politeness". NOTHING! Please just Hang up. And don't be intimidated when they call back. Hang up again, OK ?
Please don't call any # that they tell you to.
If you get scared that it really is the IRS or whoever ( it isn't) , look up IRS in the phonebook. Call THAT phone # .
Pardon me for getting carried away. But I just despise bullies and predators. 'Bye.
FTC - I am pleased that you are using my tax dollars to prosecute this type of crime. Maybe suggest to Soc. Sec.
to put this kind of info in with communication to recipients.
Not everyone has Internet access or capabilities. Thanks.

I have been receiving a lot of messages and texting me about 10 mill. and some went up to 28 million dollars and all of them has been coming from Benin and impersonating from your department Mr. Comey and FBI and our first lady Mrs. Obama. But they all have one thing in come in is having to send them a fee first so they could release the millions of dollars and even when I have told them to just send me $1.00 and keep all the rest still not happy.

I have received calls from the fake IRS person as well and didn't answer the phone - just listed to the VM. And I have gotten calls about my computer having a virus and when i pressed for more information from the caller (Indian accent) I was met with a bunch of profanity.

Funny thing reading this article just makes me so ANGRY because the FBI doesn't care about all the people being cyber scammed by people over seas for thousands and thousands of dollars. Doesn't matter that they impersonate USMC & the White House!

I don't just want these scammers to give back what they took from us, I want them to be imprisoned for life to show how wrong it is, plus it would be nice if the FTC would more proactive to this.


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