By David Rogers. December 19, 2014. BOONE, NC — Several Watauga County residents have received telephone calls from individuals purporting to be with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the tax collecting arm of the U.S. Government, Watauga County Sheriff Len Hagaman reported to Blowing Rock News on Friday. “If you are telephoned by someone claiming to be a representative of the IRS,” Hagaman said, “DO NOT provide any personal information or submit money through PayPal or any other means, including credit or debit cards.”
Sheriff Hagaman explained that the “real” IRS does not contact individuals by telephone or request money in that way. “Official IRS communication is always done via the U.S. Postal Service,” he noted.
“Many times,” the Sheriff cautioned, “these callers are very persistent and convincing — even to the point of having other individuals pose as supervisors.
“Anyone who suspects that they have been contacted by a phony representative of the IRS or is the recipient of any other suspicious calls where immediate payment is requested or demanded should contact law enforcement,” Mr. Hagaman concluded.
The fraudulent callers, the Sheriff described, will often tell citizens that they are being “audited” by the IRS and subject to arrest or lawsuit if they don’t quickly wire money via a PayPal account or a prepaid credit card or money transfer.
To report suspicious or fraudulent activity, the Sheriff’s Office contact information is:
- Len Hagaman, Sheriff, 184 Hodges Gap Rd., Boone, NC 28607
- Phone: 828-264-3761
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org