Fake Refund Phone Call Claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)

Fake Government Agencies
IRS Scams - Fake Refund Phone Call from the Internal Revenue Service
"Your Treasury Department FCU account is expired, for renewal please call us toll free 818-462-5049"

Have you received a phone call from the IRS, telling you that "Your Treasury Department FCU account is expired"; then  instructing you to "access the form for your tax refund, click here"?

It is a scam.  The IRS will never, never phone you unless you first contact them.  They WILL NOT EVER phone you to tell you you owe money or are due to receive a refund; or for any other reason. Count on it.

Sample Scam IRS Phone Call:

April 10, 2008, CFR received the following email reporting the scam:

Good Afternoon,

I heard on the radio a scam for identity theft right around the tax season. The idea of the scam was that you would get a random cell phone call from our governments "Treasury Department" with some random inquiry.  They trick you into giving them your SSN and other personal information...etc..  Of course our Treasury Department only communicates to taxpayers via mail. 

 Well, low and behold, today I receive a text message on my call phone from "Marketing@massiveinc.com" with the message: Your Treasury Department FCU account is expired, for renewal please call us toll free 818-462-5049. Of course, I am not calling back but I wanted to pass on this information to those that may not be aware of this scam. If you know how I can report this to any higher authority please let me know.

Thank you.

Clearly, this phone call and it's associated website is criminal activity intended to steal your money or identity!


If you receive a call from this number or any group that claims to represent a government agency, take down their information, including the contact's name, phone number, etc. Do NOT give them any personal or financial information, especially not a credit card, checking or bank account number, passport number, etc.

Next, look up the direct phone or email address for the agency they claim to represent and call them.  Tell them what happened and ask if it could have come from their agency.

While we don't want to encourage people to ignore correspondence from legal government agencies, it is a safe bet that NO U.S. government agency will make any first contact with you by phone. Certainly not the FBI or IRS.

The IRS offers this advice:

If you receive an unsolicited e-mail or phone call purporting to be from the IRS, take the following steps:

  • Do not open any attachments to the e-mail, in case they contain malicious code that will infect your computer.
  • Contact the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 to determine whether the IRS is trying to contact you about a tax refund.

And please let us know about any suspicious calls or phone calls you receive.  We look for patterns so that we can alert the authorities and victims to new scams, before it is too late!

How to Report a Tax Refund Scam Phone Call:

If you receive a suspicious e-mail that claims to come from the IRS,

  1. Forward the information to the IRS (phishing@irs.gov and
  2. Send a copy to ConsumerFraudReporting.org (via the feedback form)
  3. Please notify the IC3 by filing a complaint at www.ic3.gov and

Follow instructions in the link below for sending the bogus e-mail to ensure that it retains critical elements found in the original e-mail. The IRS can use the information, URLs and links in the suspicious e-mails you send to trace the hosting Web site and alert authorities to help shut down the fraudulent sites. Unfortunately, due to the expected volume, the IRS will not be able to acknowledge receipt or respond to you.

In the United States, you may also contact:

U.S. Secret Service
Financial Crimes Division
1800 G Street, NW
Room 942
Washington, DC 20223

Phone: (202) 435�5850

Fax: (202) 435�5031

Or contact the local U.S. Secret Service Field Office.

Frequently Asked Questions - 1.13 IRS Procedures: Reporting Fraud

How to Report Abusive Tax Promotions and/or Promoters:
Complete the referral form  which documents the information necessary to report an abusive tax avoidance scheme. The form can be mailed or faxed to the IRS address and fax number on the form.

How to Report Abusive CPAs, Attorneys or Enrolled Agents:
Report suspicious actions by tax professionals to the email address  of the IRS Office of Professional Responsibility.



Contact the Foreign Commercial Service (FSC) at the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. If there is no FCS office, contact the American Citizens Services Unit of the Consular Section or the Regional Security Office.

For a comprehensive list of national and international agencies to report scams, see this page.