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Tax Scams Spike in Metro New York Area, New Report Says

The Internal Revenue Service building in Washington, D.C.
The Internal Revenue Service building in Washington, D.C. Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

The Metro New York Better Business Bureau is warning of a "significant spike" in reports of impostor U.S. Treasury agents.

The bureau, which tracks such scams through its interactive Scam Tracker, said that scams whereby consumers receive calls from people claiming to be treasury agents or from the IRS are common.

"The messages to consumers from these scammers present similar urgent dilemmas: Some consumers are allegedly threatened with enforcement actions and told that failure to act will result in them facing felony charges and having to appear before a grand jury or magistrate," the release said. "Other consumers are reportedly told that they owe back taxes from previous years, and an arrest warrant has been issued for them."

Several consumers who have reported such scams to the Better Business Bureau have said the callers provided names such as David Gray, Dennis Gray and Steve Martin

These operators use a range of different telephone numbers to contact consumers, officials said. Sometimes a 202 area code is displayed, which is the designated code for Washington, D.C. Other numbers and area codes have been reported to Better Business Bureau as well.

Both the U.S. Department of Treasury and IRS have posted warnings on their websites about phone scams by operators using their agency’s names. Neither organization will reach out to consumers via phone in order to demand money, officials said.

Anyone who receives calls they believe to be related scams should call 212-533-6200.

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