Chief Domenic J. DiMella
27 Hamilton Street
Saugus, MA 01906
For Immediate Release
Monday, Feb. 1, 2016
Contact: John Guilfoil
Saugus Police Remind Residents to be Cautious with Private Information During Tax Season
SAUGUS – After several reports of IRS scams and instances of fraud last year, Chief Domenic DiMella and the Saugus Police Department are reminding residents to be careful with private and financial information during tax season and urging them to never send money to anyone they do not know.
These scams generally originate from someone the person does not know, who asks for payment in ways that are nearly untraceable. Other reports of tax fraud consist of residents having fraudulent information on their tax returns, or fraudulent tax returns filed under their social security numbers.
Saugus Police advise residents to complete and submit their taxes as soon as possible to give potential scammers less time and opportunity to submit a refund using their information.
In other instances, scammers have been known to call residents claiming to be from the IRS or another government body. The “agent” informs victims that they did not pay, or incorrectly filed their taxes and now owe money to the IRS, which must be paid promptly through a pre-loaded debit card or wire transfer. If victims refuse to cooperate, they are then threatened with arrest, deportation or suspension of a business or driver’s license.
“We advise that community members be proactive and file taxes early to ensure they receive their return and do not leave themselves vulnerable to fraud,” Chief DiMella said. “Remember, police or the IRS will never call and threaten to arrest you due to unpaid taxes.”
Additionally, residents should never give out their social security numbers, dates of birth, or any other private or financial information to someone whose identity is in question. The IRS will always send taxpayers a written notification of any tax due via the U.S. mail and will never ask for credit card, debit card or prepaid card information over the phone.
If there is any doubt, call the IRS official hotline at 800-829-1040 or 800-829-4059 (TDD for the hearing impaired).
Any residents who are concerned about their identity or personal security should call the Saugus Police Department at 781-233-1740.