The Better Business Bureau came out with their top 10 scams of 2015. Yes, I know it is already February of 2016, but I had to help people who were victims of the first two scams: IRS issues and debt collection. Here is the BBB list of top 10 scams:
Tax Scams (IRS and CRA)
Advanced Fee Loan
Work from Home
Fake Check/Money Order
Of course, the top two are some of my favorite scams – especially when these folks call me. The IRS will not be calling you about money. A legitimate debt collector will not threaten to arrest you – usually. How do these scams work? The BBB website describes all of them, but here are the two I deal with the most:
Tax Scam: You receive a phone call from someone who claims to be with the IRS (U.S.) or CRA (Canada). They claim you owe money in back taxes and will be arrested or face legal consequences if you do not pay (usually by wire or prepaid debit card). The caller ID is spoofed to appear to be a government agency or the police.
Debt Collection Scam: You receive a phone call from someone claiming that you have an unpaid debt. You are threatened with garnishments, lawsuits, even jail time if you don’t pay right now. The scammer will often use caller ID spoofing and pretend to be a government agency or law enforcement in order to further invoke fear.
If you are contacted by someone claiming to be from the IRS or a debt collector and something does not seem right, get a name and phone number and then call me. Do not try to deal with them yourself. I have seen these fake debt collectors make tough guys worried that they would lose their kids. I have seen them yell and scream at elderly women. You do not want to try to take them on yourself. Talk to an attorney and let someone fight for you!