Officials warning of IRS phone call scam

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It's tax season and a scam phone call is going around the country. (KFSN)

It's tax season and a scam phone call is going around the country. Fresno resident Marty Murphy also received a startling call.

"When you first listen to it, you kind of do a double take and say, what is this?!"

While many of us file taxes, local law enforcement is even warning people to be on alert for this IRS scam. The Better Business Bureau has also received a flood of phone calls asking if these debt collection calls are real.

"The most frequent one we're getting is from an Officer Mark Watson, and he's calling to say this is the IRS and we are pursuing a warrant on you and your home, and we will be out to see you unless you send some money," said Blair Looney, BBB Central California president-CEO.

Looney with the BBB said this is a scam, but people are often falling for the false request to the tune of about $3,500.

The scammers ask people to put the money on a debit card. Looney is urging people to think before they act if they receive one of these misleading calls.

"The IRS does not call people and threaten them. The IRS will communicate with you through a letter, and the letter will have clear instructions on what you need to do next," said Looney.

As for Murphy, she took her concern and filed a complaint with the BBB.

"Unfortunately, you're kind of in that mode, 'don't believe everything you hear', so I'm glad I took the steps I did," said Mooney.

Officials said you can also head to the BBB scam tracker online and keep an eye on scams across the country and here in Central California.

Officials hope this knowledge will empower Valley residents. So the next time they get a phone call and a scammer comes calling, they'll know what to do.
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