Police raids in India cut down IRS imposter calls

Over the last few years, we’ve warned about a lot of imposter scams. In one of the most common types, callers pretending to be from the IRS demand payments and threaten to arrest people.

Last fall, we mentioned raids on illegal telemarketing operations by the police in India. After that, the US Department of Justice indicted dozens of scammers who also were impersonating the IRS. After those actions, the number of IRS imposter scams reported to the FTC plummeted. On Tuesday, the New York Times ran a behind-the-scenes look at the call centers and the raids that took them down. It’s a great reminder that scammers are organized, and they’re really good liars.

Here are four things that can help you avoid telephone scammers:

  1. The IRS will never call to demand immediate payment, nor will the IRS call about taxes you owe without first mailing you a bill. If you get a live or pre-recorded call claiming to be from the IRS and demanding payment right away, hang up. If you know you owe taxes or think you might owe, you can call the IRS at 1.800.829.1040 to explore your options.
  2. Don’t trust your caller ID. Scammers can make caller ID look like anyone is calling: the IRS, a business or government office…even your own phone number. If they tell you to pay money for any reason, or ask for your financial account numbers, hang up.  If you think the caller might be legitimate, call back to a number you know is genuine – not the number the caller gave you.
  3. Hang up on robocalls. If you pick up the phone and hear a recorded sales pitch, hang up and report it to the FTC. These calls are illegal.
  4. Talk to someone. Before you give up money or information, talk to someone you trust. Scammers want you to make decisions in a hurry. Slow down, check out the story, search online – or just tell a friend.
Tagged with: imposter, IRS, scam


Keep up the vigilance, just yesterday I received a robo call and a call from someone wanting me to press 1, to receive more calls from them! I hung up on them

Good job! Keep up the good work!

Please be advised that someone under the name scarborough RSC. the phone # are 210-736-3080 @ 941-379-1954 is constantly harassing people over the phone, even calling after 9 pm on daily basis.

Keep up the vigilance, just yesterday I received a robo call and a call from someone wanting me to press 1, to receive more calls from them! I hung up on them!!

It's gotten so I no longer answer my phone, unless it's someone I know. So much for the "Do Not Call" registry. I joined it when it first started. It stopped them for a bit. Now, it seems like the list is more like a registry the companies use to obtain phone numbers.

Last Thursday, I received a phone call from a number that raised my eyebrows more than usual: 1-800-555-1212. Pretty tricky attempt. I did not answer, so I have no idea who it was.

Now, if someone could stop Home Source from snail mailing and calling. They even leave messages on my voice mail. Since they're so active, it seems like someone could shut them up or down.83 Never done business with them.


what my wife and I do when we receive calls about our computers. We keep them on the line and keep finding out what is really wrong with our machines and catch them on things they say that are completely wrong. Sometimes I say 'hi "what his, her name is" I work for the same company you do. I did not know we were suppose to call each other' I then wait to see what they say. it is normally a CLICK BUSS when they hang up. LOL

I feel my blood-pressure rising with each call from computers or telemarketers who claim to NOT be telemarketers. I feel its an invasion of my privacy and when through my cell phone, use of my hard earned money for minutes. I think the carriers should BLOCK all computer generated calls. That's a start. Thank you!

That's great news!!!

Phone numbers are displayed on my TV from all callers to my house. If I don't know the number I do not answer. One day a number looked fimilar to me so I answered. It was an IRS scam call so
I hung up. I looked back at my caller ID and the number was fimilar because it was MY home phone number! After months and months of robo calls I called Time Warner and asked them to help me. They did. I get very few calls now. There is half of a ring and the calls no longer come through.call you cable subscriber and ask for help blocking numbers...good luck.

When I receive a robo call on my work number, I transfer the call to the fax machine; let them listen to the lovely beeping for a while. Plus, the robo machine will report back that your number is a fax machine. That will remove your telephone number from their system.

9:57 P.M. EST

Good for you!

For those without a fax, maybe blowing a whistle whenever a live scam artist calls, keep a cooking pot with a spoon and bang it into the receiver, or if you can: move into your bathroom with your landline/cell then flush the toilet in the receiver..

Great work! I have received many robo-calls in the past couple of months. I've also had the fake IRS calls. I hang up on all of them.

I beg you to look into MyTechBay. com and tell me if they are legit or not. I think they purposely locked up my computer and then gave me a number to call supported by Microsoft, McAfee, Google, Symantech and others and then making me believe they were an American company to fix my computer for hundreds of dollars.

Excellent news...keep up the good work!

The BIG question is: How is it possible that anyone can change the caller ID info??? Should be an easy fix by the phone company

I have been annoyed by hang-up after 5 rings for the last year and here are some of the last weeks hang-up calls that I have received in the last 2 weeks ;

9 Dec 1145, 1210, 1921, 14 Dec ,1340, 2040, 15 Dec 2090 16 Dec 945 17 Dec 2040 20 Dec 1807 22 Dec 840 23 Dec 1040, 2043 26 Dec 1040, 905 29 Dec 0903, 420 30 Dec 0820, 1055, 1408, 1415, 1424, 1920 30 Dec 1920

called AT&T to start CALLER ID 2 JAN Hang Up calls continued at 1330, 1950, 2053 3 Jan 2017 CALLER ID STARTED Pvt Caller 2154 No ID 3 Jan 2058 276 403 4866 3 Jan 1501 EQA WATER WORKS 727 541 5748 THE END :


This morning I answered the phone and a sweet female voice said "HI, Nana." I asked who it was and she said "It's me, your oldest Granddaughter." I could hear in the background what sounded like a call center. It wasn't her voice, alarm bells went off, and I hung up. I knew it was a scam. I am called Nana by my granddaughter, so the use of the correct name was confusing at first. Someone could be taken in.

These idiots are smart enough to know this information too. As a retired bill collector you would be surprised of the information Imwas told when Imcalled asking for someone. You could get information out of anybody if you ask the right questions or pose as someone else. Just hang up and press no. It tons of they ask you too. Pressing even a number one may transfer your phone number to a scam artist to take over your number and make unwanted or long distance calls. Phone answer beware!!!

I keep receiving call to fix my compute. They even called when my computer was in the shop. I just tell them I do not have a computer. now they are calling about alert system. I tell them I am not interested ant do not call again. I am keepimg log of calls and reporting to FTC do not call.

I finally stopped getting calls from scammers pretending my computer was having problems by telling the scammer they could make a lot of money by turning their illegal company in as a whistleblower at the FCC Fraud hotline. I told them I tell every tech caller that and someone is going to do it - why shouldn't it be them that gets the reward money? They haven't called since and that was over a year ago when I was getting the regularly.

I have blocked everyone who has called through my telephone company. I don't care if it's unknown or unavailable,the numberis blocked. Major reductions from robot sales calls, IRS Scammers, even some annoying friends,also I use the block calls and text messages features from my cell phone provider. What a relief.

I get at least 3 calls per day on our landline and more on my cell phone. Card Services, and computer errors are the worst. Now I get calls for political surveys and state police looking for money. Crazy

Yes Nana, I too am a grandmother and received a call from "my grandson." I truly believed it was my grandson. I, however, did not send money. I told the young man I was sorry but I did not, as he knew, do anything behind his parents' back. When I told my son about it, it was a good thing I gave the right answer. However, he couldn't understand why I even bothered listening to the phony. I can't believe it either. I just hang up on phone calls several times a day or just don't answer when the phone is either not recognized or the call is someone called, "Not Available." That really takes nerve to bother someone and then show "Not Available" in caller ID.

I love to play with their minds and waste their time. since they get paid for each phone call. I am retired so I have time. happy new year

The problem is we do bother listening, because these callers are such good actors. The girl who called me and pretended to be my Granddaughter sounded very genuine and convincing. I think they must audition to get these call center jobs. It would be best to use caller ID and not answer unknown calls, so we don't get sucked in.

A few months ago- I got one of those IRS calls-and knew it was a scam--But I acted like I was horrifeied and eager to settle with them. But I kept asking more and more questions and agreed to followtheir directions--which had me -along with my attorney-going to Washington DC to appear in federal Court.- i asked about flights and lodging etc- kept them on the line for half hour- then told them "I know you are scammers and my taxes are fine -as I am in a NO PAY Bracket" before I could hang up- YOU NEVER HEARD SUCH A STORM OF CUSS WORDS- he was so thoroughly mad that he had been taken !!

feed them scammers a bunch of their own medicine like a loud whistle or fog horn

Got a call: Don't hang up. I will play you a recorded message telling you how to put ten thousand dollars in you pocket. I hung up.
This is the first time I have heard this scam.

in Hawaii I found out that Hawaiian telcom can block unwanted calls (e.g. repeat callers even though reported on do not call registry)you just need to call them. this is the same on your cell phone...you should be able block unwanted/unknown caller numbers yourself.

I had one call me yesterday asking about the presidential race and said if you are going to vote Trump press 1 if you are going to bote Clinton press 2! I hung up! I'm guessing pressing a number will give them access to all you info registered with the phone company?

yes i get robo-calls and overseas calls, yet bottom line FCC investagation division FBI and DHS knows who this is that why they fililey arrest them yet they could of done this 1 year ago i Michael will say IRS has done unlawful acts against me anyways can anyone prove to me why we need the IRS i mean can we not collect lawful taxes through the Department of Treasury with that said be well rest well WithAllKindNess Michael

Protect your privacy. Make sure you have Caller ID and Voice Mail set up on your phone and don't pick up unless you KNOW the caller AND want to talk to them. Be vigilant

I had heard that these IRS scammers were harvesting phone numbers from Craigslist. I found this to be true...I list an ad in Craigslist and within minutes I started getting recorded messages from IRS. I deleted the sales at on Craigslist and two days later no phone calls.

To test I listed another ad on Craigslist and with a short time the calls started again. I was getting so many of these calls I started writing down the phone numbers and reported them. No Craigslist...no fake IRS calls. List something on the Internet and here they come.

I never did return any phone calls but I sure wanted to just to have some fun. I have often done this with Craigslist scammers to see how long I can string them along In addition I was receiving a LARGE amount of calls from people with Indian accent telling me my computer had a problem and I had to login and follow their instructions. I had some fun with them for a while but now never leave my phone plugged in unless I want to make a call, then make my call and unplug from the wall outlet. This is the best way to never get unwanted phone calls.

Regarding the robocalls, how can you report it to FTC when there is no name or phone number to report?

If you click on the words highlighted in blue, it will take you to a page where you can report it to the FTC.

A robocall can also result in a call where nothing is heard after the it's answered. That's probably because the robocall system dials several numbers at once and the operator will take the first call that's answered and abandon the others.

One would think that with all our technology that the phone service providers could stop unwanted calls. What do they get out of allowing this to continue? Money?

Through my face book requested a friend Dr.Luise Huges , acting like a real doctor. but it was huge scammer to collect money.. over a couple month , I finally get rid of him and lost 10 grant.. over romance chat... what a soooo stupid and blind I was !!!

Warnings are not a substitute for action. We are being attacked and it is time to strike back. Their access should be jammed and their bankers shut down.

Beware of this website www. fiverr. com They have 400 plus negative comments and lies about their skills and even if you hire you will never get the work done.

I don't answer the land-line anymore. I have been forced to turn off the answering machine as well because scanners will call back more if they know the number is an active one. I check all calls against a complaint website and keep a log of them at 800notes.com. The phone companies should be required to provide a free reporting method to paying consumers on a per-call basis. What ever happened to call tracing? This has become just ridiculous!

hello im glad too hear that there is something worthwhile being done about impostor scams.i have reported to the ftc my experiences with those people,trying time after time too take money from an unknown source,that they have nothing to do with or even know.i would like too get a top notch lawyer or agent and have them all,to give back what they stole from me or be arrested by the u.s. authorities.

January 24, 2017 received call stating it's IRS AND I WAS GOING TO JAIL. I own 2750.00 and law enforcement was coming to arrest me if I didn't pay. Hung up when they called back again i answered FBI agent Roth. They hung up

Been receiving calls from 312-878-5539 but they hang up when we answer. I called them back and they identified themselves as the FBI investigating tax fraud, called them out and they disconnected.

Just received a call saying the IRS was suing me and I needed to call them back at the following #: 970-315-1313. Obviously a scam so I'm not returning the call but people should be warned. Some individuals are more vulnerable to this type of scam.

Let's face it. There is nothing that anyone can do to stop these calls. The smart thing to do is is to do a better job educating the public about the problem. The government needs to spend the money to saturate the radio and TV with public service announcements. Better use of the money than trying to block the calls. They just keep finding ways to get around them.The only reason these crooks continue to operate is because it is profitable. Dry up the money and they will stop. Of course they will just come up with a new way to cheat people. There will always be crooks among us.
because it is profitable.

I think someone should figure out the way CID can be exploited and spoofed.

I usually play along and waste their time when I'm on a lunch break. They get so mad that they block me from calling back. Usually Irs from India. I'll keep calling them back until they can't stand me then presto .... no more calls ever. I have a lot of fun with these guys.

Here is the voicemail message left for me earlier today: "Hella this message is for (my name sort of) social ending in****, case department 71883. My name is Logan Madison a private courier in conjunction with Maricopa County. Giving you a call regarding some file documents that requires your signature immediately. You will need to be available tomorrow afternoon between 12 and 5. Assuming that you will be at work around this time I will be stopping there first. You need to be available with two valid ids and a witness...." he then goes on to say that if he finds me at work my HR manager or boss will need to be a witness, He then leaves me a local number even tho the all came from 404-455-9111. What freaking blackmail! I am a paralegal! Be careful folks!

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