February 1, 2019
Writer: J.D. Packer
Rexburg police are trying to get the word out to watch out for phone scammers. Residents of Rexburg, along with students, are getting phone calls from people pretending to be the IRS. Local officers have been busy with this issue.
“This has been going on for years, however there are certain times of the year that these criminals will try and take advantage of people,” said Rexburg Police Department Detective David Stubbs. “As we know right now, we are getting into tax season these scammers know this and they will contact people and they sound very legitimate.”
Det. Stubbs said the scammers try to get you to purchase gift cards. The scammer will ask you for the pin number on the cards.
“That’s how they make their money,” he said. “They’ll ask them, hey you’re in trouble with the IRS or the local police are coming out to arrest you. But here is one of the keys that you know you are getting scammed. First off, the IRS will never call you and ask you to go down to your local Walmart or Walgreens or whatever convenient store, they tell you to go to and pick up green dot cards to pay for your overdue taxes or whatever else.”
People should know that the IRS already has your key information. Agents don’t need your personal information because they should already have it. So, if the person on the phone asks for your social security number or credit card number, you would be safe to hold off on relaying that information.
Local grocery stores and places that sell gift cards have been warned by the Rexburg Police Department to have their employees look out for people who could be victims of these scams.
“I feel bad for all of these people,” Det. Stubbs said. “The target is college kids and usually the elderly. Those two categories are their hot topics. The best way to handle it is to tell them they are scammers and hang up on them or tell them before I do anything with you, I am going to contact my local police and get them involved.”
If you or someone you know has fallen victim to one of these scammers call police.