Watch out for scams as tax season begins - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Watch out for scams as tax season begins

Paula Huggins, a tax preparer, says they've been busy with calls since the start of the year. Paula Huggins, a tax preparer, says they've been busy with calls since the start of the year.
CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - The start of the new year means a lot of things, like having to file your taxes.

However, if you're not careful, the Better Business Bureau says you could be scammed.

"Everyone is gearing up for tax season and so they are thinking about their taxes and so are scammers," Joey Keys with the BBB said.

Keys says this time of year its common to get calls from people pretending to be IRS agents.

They generally want you to pay some outstanding tax debt that doesn't exist.

These calls tend to sound legit.

The caller might have the last four digits of your social security number, and they may even threaten you.

"Sometimes there's been reports where they've said you may lose your drivers license or be put to jail," Keys said. "So once you hang up or they hang up. They will call you form another number which appears to be from the police department or the license bureau claiming now to either arrest you or take you license so they can be very convincing and really get people panicked and worried."

However, Keys said the IRS will never call you directly.

"The scammers may even have some information like the last four digits of your social security number that they may may present you to make you think they are legitimate when in fact they aren't," Keys said. "The IRS will first contact you by mail and they aren't going to pressure you, or rude or aggressive to you or ask for payment right away."

Keys said the IRS won't email you either to request personal information.

If you want to know if you do owe money, call the real IRS phone number at 800-829-1040.

The BBB says these scammers can be very convincing and that's why you need to make sure you're actually dealing with the IRS and not a phony.

Copyright 2015 KFVS. All rights reserved.
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