Move over, Internal Revenue Service. Criminals now prefer the Social Security Administration as their cover agency when they try to swindle Americans over the phone.
WILLOW GROVE, Pa. (AP) — The distraught voice on the phone didn't sound like her grandson.
But the man who called 80-year-old Elfriede Flavin claiming to be her grandson's attorney explained why: Her grandson had broken his nose in a car accident that also landed him in a Tennessee jail. He needed $10,000 for bail, but the exchange had to be secret because of a "court-ordered gag order."
The recent bust of a large fraud and money laundering conspiracy highlights one key takeaway for you: Be wary of who is on the other end of your phone line — particularly if they claim to be the IRS.
Why can’t the government catch these guys? That was the sentiment echoed in my inbox over and over as those Internal Revenue Service (IRS) impersonation phone scams exploded. It felt painfully slow, but arrests were finally made in the United States and India. This week, many of those scammers were sentenced for their crimes.
A growing number of consumers are falling victim to impostor scams. That’s when a con artist impersonates someone trustworthy, like a government official or law enforcement agent.