Q:

What are some known phone scams?

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Quick Answer

As of 2015, a common phone scam involves scam artists impersonating IRS agents and demanding immediate tax payment, reports the Internal Revenue Service. Another prevalent phone scam is telemarketing fraud, which involves people calling consumers and offering gifts, prizes and special offers in return for their bank account or credit card information, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

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Full Answer

Phone scammmers pretending to be IRS agents use false names and IRS badge numbers, warns the IRS. They typically target the elderly and immigrants who have recently arrived in the country, threatening them with arrest or deportation if they do not pay immediately. The scammers demand that their victims reveal their personal financial information or pay using an untraceable method such as a prepaid debit card. However, the IRS doesn't ask for payment information over the phone or demand payment without giving taxpayers a chance to question the amount they owe. If consumers receive a phone call purportedly from the IRS, they should hang up and phone the IRS directly to confirm the call and report any scams to the Federal Trade Commission.

Those who commit telemarketing fraud call consumers and claim that the consumers have been selected for special opportunities, explains the Federal Trade Commission. Scammers offer vacation packages, business opportunities, easy credit, lottery winnings and other inducements. They exert enormous pressure on consumers to make quick decisions. Consumers should never give personal or financial information over the phone to unknown businesses and organizations. They should take their time, ask for details and investigate before they send money.

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