MCINTOSH, Ala. (WALA) – A local grandmother had a close call Wednesday morning, August 20, when she almost gave scammers some $1,500.
Ola Garcia of McIntosh, told FOX10 the scammers called her home phone and claimed to be agents with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), threatening to have her arrested if she didn’t pay up.
“He said, ‘you’re fixing to be prosecuted,'” Garcia explained, “He said, ‘they’re going to take your house, your car, your land, if you have money in the bank, they are going to freeze your money.'”
Garcia told FOX10 the scammer asked her to pay him with a Green Dot Money Pack, which can be purchased at many local pharmacies. The Green Dot Money Pack can only be filled with cash, making it a seamless way for scammers to receive untraceable money.
According to the IRS website, some 90,000 Americans nationwide have filed complaints about similar phone scams, and some 1,100 of those people actually fell victim to the scammers, losing some $5 million total.
The IRS website explains the organization will never ask for credit card, debit card, or prepaid card information over the phone.
The IRS will never insist that taxpayers use a specific payment method to pay tax obligations, like the Green Dot Money Pack Garcia was asked to use, and the IRS will never request immediate payment over the phone.
Also, the IRS says it will never take law enforcement action immediately after the phone call.