Con artist claims to be an IRS agent - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Con artist claims to be an IRS agent

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August 16, 2006

Albany -- A warning  from Albany Police about a con artist preying on people. Investigators say a man is using the telephone to try and rip people off.  

Police say a central Albany couple in their mid-70's got a phone call last week from a man who claimed to be with the IRS.  He was not, but tried to convince the couple they might lose their house if they did not give him money.

Albany Police Lt. Kenn Singleton said "That they were behind in their mortgage payments, and that in order to slow down the process of foreclosure, they would come by the home and pick up $300.00."  

 Investigators say the couple asked the caller a few questions, got suspicious, and hung up, then reported it to Police.

Albany Police warn that the elderly are often targets of con men because they can be more trusting, and warn you to be cautious of people calling you on the phone.

Here are some suggestions of how to keep from being ripped off by a phone con artist.

  • Police say if someone calls you claiming to be an official from a bank or law enforcement, be on your guard. Very few government agencies or financial institutions will call people on the phone to do business.

  • Ask questions. Flim flam artists will have a hard time answering questions, and often will hang up.

  • Demand a return phone number from the person. If they are doing a con job, they will not provide one.

  • NEVER give out personal financial information on the phone. A popular con is asking people to verify their bank numbers. Your bank already has your financial information, and you should not give it to anyone on the phone, no matter who they claim they are.

  • Report suspicious phone calls to the Police. They can warn and protect others.

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