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Beware IRS phone scam

A Picayune resident was contacted this week by someone claiming to be a representative from the Internal Revenue Service, which is suspected to be a scam.
On Wednesday afternoon, Louise Miller received a recorded message on her landline phone from an alleged IRS agent.
“The caller sounded like he had an Indian or Nigerian accent,” Miller said. “He stated, ‘there was a matter of great importance regarding your taxes that needed to be resolved within the next 24 hours.’”
Miller said she heard of phone scams before and generally doesn’t answer unknown numbers. This was the first time the caller left a message on her home answering machine, she said.
Picayune Police Chief Bryan Dawsey would like to warn the public to be aware of this scam. The scammers are calling from a New York based number 716-780-4155.
The people identify themselves as IRS agents and attempt to pressure victims into paying money by credit card. They threaten arrest and seizure of property, Assistant Chief Jeremy Magri said in a press release.
“Anytime people receive phone calls out of the blue from unknown numbers, check and see if there have been reports of scams,” Magri said. “If they tell you ‘you’ve won’ or ‘you owe something’ do some checking into or contact law enforcement before handing over money.”
For more information about this and other scams, visit the Mississippi Better Business Bureau’s website at www.bbb.org/mississippi.