Persistent, phony IRS calls concern and annoy Independence residents

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. -- Police across the metro have been getting reports about phony Internal Revenue Service calls. Two weekends ago, the Independence Police Department fielded about 200 calls from residents saying they got these types of calls from someone claiming to be from the IRS.

“Answered it and it was a robocall, and it was the IRS telling me they were bringing suit against me. Not the way to start a Monday during Christmas season,” said Jami Kazlarich.

Kazlarich says the phone call came in from a number in Washington state.

Instead of calling the “IRS” back, Kazlarich instead called her tax accountant who told her do not call back, it is a scam, the IRS will never call you, the agency`s sole mode of communication is through the mail.

While Kazlarich didn't call, FOX 4 did, and at first the line was busy, then when we called back it simply rang, and then went silent.

“I think probably they would have asked me for personal information,” she said.

That is what police say. These types of scams are a way for thieves to get your personal information and ultimately steal your money or your identity, and these types of calls can be intimidating.

“For a minute there you kind of worry until you get your faculties back and you realize, okay, this is from Washington State, the IRS is probably going to call me from the East coast,” said Kazlarich.

Sometimes there are little clues that will tip you off to the scam. For instance, in this case the robo message said “Internal Revenue Services,” the government agency is called the Internal Revenue Service.

The best rule to follow is to never, ever give out your personal information over the phone, to anyone you don`t personally know.