FAIRFIELD, Conn. - A Fairfield man went to Fairfield police headquarters Thursday night to report that he had been a victim of an IRS phone scam earlier that day, police said.
He told police that he had received a phone call from a person who said she was Julie Smith of the Internal Revenue Service. "Smith" said that his wife owed $7,000 in back taxes and that it had to be paid immediately or his wife would be arrested, he told police.
The 49-year-old victim was told to go to both Rite Aid and CVS Pharmacy to purchase the Green Dot pre-paid credit cards and to then read the numbers on the back of the card to the person on the phone, police said. He was told not to hang up until the transactions were complete, police said.
Almost immediately after hanging up he realized it had been a scam, and he attempted to halt the Green Dot credit cards, police said. He was unable to stop all of the money, and ultimately lost $6,798 to the scam, police said.
In a Code Red phone message in late July, Fairfield police warned residents about phone scams involving the IRS or utility companies.
"All of these calls are scams. Residents should hang up on the caller, provide no personal information, and never send money or gift card numbers to anyone you do not personally know," Deputy Chief Chris Lyddy said in the message.
Residents are encouraged to remember that neither the IRS or any utility company would ask for Green Dot or other pre-paid credit card numbers to be given out over the phone. Police say that in both situations they would never contact residents by phone.
If residents are concerned about a possible scam, they should contact the Fairfield police at 203-254-4800 and file a report.