Of the 3,500
telephone privacy complaints made to the Indiana Attorney General’s Office
in 2016, the most predominant has been the IRS impostor scam.
But--according to a
statement released by the AG’s Office on Thursday--following a raid last
month in India which disrupted a telemarketing ring, complaints have dropped
from nearly 500 in September to just 67 in October.
The second and
third most common complaints: phone scams offering credit services and tech
In early October,
Indian police arrested 70 people in Mumbai believed responsible for the
so-called Internal Revenue Service (IRS) impostor scam, the statement said.
A few weeks later, the U.S. Justice Department arrested 20 alleged
co-conspirators in this country.
certainly, was scary enough: callers claiming to be IRS agents demanded
payment of past-due taxes, often threatening arrest and jail time if the
payment were not made immediately using pre-paid cards.
enforcement actions in India and the U.S. have provided Hoosiers much
appreciated relief,” Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller said. “But these
scams are like Whack-a-Mole, and I expect we will see another one pop up in
Hoosiers can’t let
their guard down and need to continue to be vigilant in not offering their
personal or financial information when contacted by phone.
It just isn’t
reliable or safe to assume someone trustworthy is contacting you.”
More than 14,000
Hoosiers have complained to the AG’s Office about unwanted calls this year,
an increase of nearly 1,000 complaints from all of 2015, most of them
attributable to the IRS scam.
The best way for
people to know whether a call is a scam is by registering their number on
the Do Not Call list. Legitimate companies will not call numbers on the Do
Not Call list, so if someone is on the list and is receiving unsolicited
contact, it is likely a scam, Zoeller noted.
The next quarterly
deadline to register cellular and landline residential phone numbers on the
Do Not Call list is 11 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 15. The updated list will take
effect Jan. 1, 2017.