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Protect Yourself Against Holiday Scammers

Around the holiday season, scam telephone calls are all too frequent. When you receive a call from a number you do not recognize, be wary of the person on the other line. If the person on the line claims to be someone from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or a collections agency, do not give them any personal information. It is important to be able to tell if the source you are being contacted by is legitimate.

According to the IRS, these scammers may know a lot about the people they are targeting, such as the last four digits of their social security number. This might lead to the victim trusting them and giving them the information they are asking for. These callers are also able to rig the caller identification on the phone to make it appear that it is the IRS calling. Please remember, if the IRS is trying to make contact, they will correspond through postal mail. They will never make a phone call or send an email.

 


According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), you should never provide personal information or wire money to a company you are not familiar with. If you are receiving these calls, you have some options. You can:

– File a complaint with the FTC and include “IRS Telephone Scam” in your complaint.
– Forward any emails from a scammer to phishing@irs.gov.

Along with the IRS scam telephone calls and emails, collections agencies also use this time of year to try to collect on any old debts you may owe. According to the FTC, it is important to know your rights if a debt collector contacts you regarding a time-barred debt.

According to the FTC, a time-barred debt is a debt that has passed the statute of limitations, meaning a debt collector cannot sue you for this money because a certain amount of years has passed. Be aware, the statute of limitations is different in each state and is different for certain kinds of debts.


Debt collectors are allowed to contact you regarding these debts, but don’t be afraid to ask questions, because they are required by law to tell you the truth. You are able to dispute or verify this debt with them.

Some of your options include paying nothing on the debt, making a partial payment, or completely paying it off. According to the FTC, it is recommended you consult with a lawyer first before choosing one of these options.

If you fall victim to these scams, it is important to report it, and it is also highly recommended that you contact your credit card company or bank to challenge any payment you made to these counterfeit companies. To completely avoid these situations, we recommend you completely block these numbers on your phone and be careful about who you give your information to.

Call PARRIS at (661) 949-2595 if you fall victim to one of these scams, and we will make sure you are taken care of. We are here for you and want you to have a happy and safe holiday season.

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