Here's the audio of Tom getting the scoop on how you can prevent the IRS suing you. Interesting scam, hard to believe people would fall for it! I won't give away any spoilers...
I'll grant you: I'd rather be contacted by shysters pretending to be the IRS than by the actual IRS.
But it's still annoying.
The other day I got a voicemail message saying that the IRS was filing suit against me for back taxes and that I needed to call right away if I wanted to straighten things out.
This was an obvious scam for numerous reasons (the IRS doesn't sue you for back taxes, for one thing), but since I was on a long drive and had a little time on my hands, I figured I'd call and see what they'd try to pull.
So I dialed the number, and a person with a thick Indian accent answered and identified himself as being with the IRS -- as if you ever get someone from the IRS on the phone that quickly.
So I played along. After some preliminaries, the man identified himself as "Kevin Peterson." I pardoned myself for sounding insensitive, but I noted that he didn't sound like any Kevin Peterson I'd ever met. What was his real name?
"You want to know my real name?"
"My real name is $%&@# you, a******."
I gleefully shouted, "I win!" and hung up.
The whole thing was so much fun that I called again.
This time I let the guy (a different one) go through his whole spiel. Then I pointed out that the scenario he was describing, in which the IRS had supposedly conducted a secret audit, and on that basis was threatening to seize my house and bank accounts, was so obviously contrary to IRS operating procedure that I was the one who should be suing him.
He got flustered and hung up. By an interesting coincidence, this guy was also named Kevin.
This was too much fun. I called a third time. I asked if I could speak to someone who wasn't named Kevin. The person shuffled some papers and declared himself to be named "Stuart Connor."
Yeah, he sure sounded like a Stuart Connor.
This one opened the conversation by saying he was calling to get my lawyers' information in advance of the lawsuit. I was supposed to be trembling and begging for mercy, I assume, but instead I called his bluff and said, "Sure: Weichert and Gasper, in Topeka, Kansas. Would you like their number?"
Obviously their number was the last thing in the world he wanted. He then proceeded to explain how much trouble I was in, and said the police were coming to my home in Topeka.
You mean the home I recently vacated and moved 1100 miles away from?
He replied that he'd just traced my location, and that the police were coming there.
"Oh, really? Where did you trace me to?"
He wouldn't say.
I then told him his whole racket was awful: if you're going to scam people, at least make it plausible.
He became angry with me and hung up.
Unfortunately, I was in the car and didn't record these.
But I thought: tomorrow I'll call yet again, using my podcasting equipment, and I'll record a few of these conversations for the show.
They are priceless, my friends.
The first half of today's episode deals with the controversy surrounding the price of EpiPens: doesn't this show the failure of the free market?
In the second half, I take on the scammers.
This ain't one to miss:
The entire episode can be heard here:
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