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Authorities Issue Warnings About Phone Scams

Area police agencies are reporting a rise in phone scams, particularly by callers claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service.
Area police agencies are reporting a rise in phone scams, particularly by callers claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service. Photo Credit: File photo

State, local and county police agencies are reporting an increase in phone scams, particularly those from callers pretending to represent the Internal Revenue Service.

Earlier this month, State Police issued a similar warning as reported here by Daily Voice and here via the Greenburgh Police Department.

Kieran O'Leary, a spokesman for the Westchester County Department of Public Safety, said, "We have received multiple calls in recent months from residents in Mount Kisco and Cortlandt -- where we provide municipal police services -- reporting fraud attempts by persons claiming to be from the IRS."

O'Leary noted, "In most cases, the residents refused to provide any information, recognizing the call as fraudulent."

While there has not been a recent increase in complaints in Putnam County, Sheriff Donald B. Smith issued this advisory earlier this year.

On Tuesday, a Daily Voice reader from Mount Pleasant reported being harassed by a Washington, D.C., (202 area code) caller. "I have been getting daily calls from this number. . .saying that they are from the IRS and fines were imposed. They are obvious scammers and very aggressive,'' he said.

On Monday, the Village of Mamaroneck Police Department reported that it had received multiple phone calls from residents stating they received calls from persons claiming to be from the IRS demanding money.

Mamaroneck officials said that the State Tax Department and the IRS always make first contact by letter with a phone number you can contact to verify that it was sent by the agency. Neither agency will request personal or financial information via email or over the phone.

Police also advise residents:

-- Hang up the phone immediately if someone claiming to be from the Tax Department or IRS unexpectedly calls and threatens police arrest, deportation or license revocation.

-- If you have caller ID, make note of the originating telephone number so that you can provide this information to the police.

-- Don't give any personal information over the phone and do not forward or wire any money.

-- Do not meet anyone you don't know who has contacted you seeking personal information or money.

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