HATTIESBURG, Miss – The Hattiesburg Police Department want to warn the public of a tax related IRS phone scam. According to the HPD, several residents have reported receiving unsolicited calls from people claiming to be IRS employees.
The caller is told to provide credit card information over the phone because they owe taxes. The consumer is advised that if the owed taxes are not paid over the phone, they will be arrested by an IRS agent. HPD said the IRS will not demand payment over the phone for owed taxes. Lt. Jon Traxler said the public needs to be advised to not fall victim to this crime.
According to the victims, the caller appears to have a foreign accent.
That’s not the only scam in the Pine Belt. Residents need to be mindful of anyone claiming to be with the water department for the City of Hattiesburg.
Authorities said dispatch received a call from a resident stating that someone was claiming to work for the water department. The resident was asked to provide credit card information over the phone, and if the victim refuses to cooperate, they are threatened with termination of water service. HPD said the City of Hattiesburg will not ask for money over the phone.
Lt. Traxler said everyone that received calls for both scams have been elderly.
HPD wants to make the public aware of the scams and to be cautious of anyone asking for credit card information over the phone.