New Canaan’s police chief is warning residents about a phone scam after a town resident received a call from a woman claiming to be “IRS Officer Hellgrate.”
According to Chief Leon Krolikowski, the woman left what appeared to be a Washington, DC (area code 202) call-back number in a message saying the resident could avoid legal proceedings and prosecution by calling back straightaway.
Specifically, the call-back number given was “202-506-9925.”
“This number appears to be from the Washington DC area code but is it likely a ‘spoofed’ call,” Krolikowski said in a press release. “The person answering the telephone at this number has a heavy foreign accent (likely Spanish), identifies the agency as the Internal Revenue Service, and when questioned by the police as part of the investigation the caller hung up.”
Though this call appears to be computer-generated, others may be initiated by live callers, Krolikowski said—in any case, they are scams.
“Older residents are usually the targets of these fraudulent telephone calls,” he said. “Generally, Internal Revenue Service contact with taxpayers on a federal tax issue is likely to occur via United States mail.”
Here are the New Canaan Police chief’s tips for residents receiving these types of communications:
- Never give personal information(dates of birth, social security numbers, credit card numbers, bank account numbers, computer passwords, etc.) to unknown persons over the telephone or electronically.
- Be suspicious of unsolicited telephone calls, voice messages and/or e-mails.
- Do not call these unsolicted callers back.
- Always check information that is provided by the caller to ensure it is accurate and legitimate.
- Avoid conversations with unknown callers.
- Never wire or send money in response to an unknown caller who makes an unexpected demand.
- Contact our police department at 203-594-3500 for assistance.