"Hello, my name is officer Julie Smith....blah blah blah IRS."
Lots of FOX 2 viewers have been getting these messages on their phones. Like Pat who found the message on her 95-year-old father's phone.
Even the cameraman for Rob Wolchek received the call. Since he's a little camera shy, Wolchek made the call for him.
"IRS can I help you," said the voice on the other end of the phone.
"Yes, may I speak with officer Julie Smith please," Wolchek said.
"Can I have the number on which you got a call please," the officer said.
The guy from the all-American IRS agency seems to have a foreign accent.
"Now, it couldn't be that these are the bad guys behind what the treasury inspector general says is the largest ever phone fraud scam targeting
taxpayers could it," Wolchek said.
"Is this your cell phone number or your home number," the officer said.
"That's my cell phone number," Wolchek said.
This "officer" asks a whole bunch of questions.
"What's the last name can you spell it," the officer said.
After the officer tries to get personal information, Wolchek starts asking him some questions.
"I'm a little nervous about what this is all about," Wolchek said. "I got an urgent message from officer Julie Smith. I don't even know your name. What is your name."
"My name is Michael Jones," the officer said. "I'm an investigation officer."
And where is this IRS office?
"In San Francisco, California," Jones said.
Officer Michael Jones seems to not like Wolchek's questions and says he needs to talk to his daughter. She's the one with the tax problem.
"Can you tell me what this is regarding," Wolchek said.
"Sir, it's a very confidential information," the officer said.
It must be confidential info - Wolchek doesn't even have a daughter.
"Do you have like a supervisor or somebody I can talk to," Wolchek said.
"Yeah, hold on," Jones said.
After waiting on hold for a few minutes.
"Officer David can I help you," said a second officer on the line.
"Oh, this is officer David," Wolchek said. "Gosh you sound kind of like the last guy I talked to.
"Officer David what is your position there?"
"Who are you first of all," David said.
"My name is Rob Wolchek."
This guy, if it is a different guy, won't say anything. Wolchek's guess is he wants a less inquisitive taxpayer - he wants to speak to his daughter.
"What was your name again," Wolchek said.
"David Cooper," the officer said.
"David Cooper, and what office are you with," Wolchek said.
Hard to believe the IRS hung up on someone. So Wolchek calls them back in a minute and it gets real colorful.
First, here's Pat. Remember, the supposed IRS called her father's phone and officer Julie Smith left the same urgent message.
Pat knows her dad doesn't owe any back taxes. She says people are always trying to con him because he's 95 and she say he would have panicked if he'd heard the message.
She called the guys back and Wolchek gave them a piece of his mind.
Now it's time for him to call back and since he doesn't have a daughter, he has a FOX 2 producer call.
"Thank you for calling the IRS how can I help you," the officer said.
"I got a message from officer Julie Smith to call her," the producer said.
"Okay ma'am, the reason you were called was because there is a tax fraud case on your name," the officer said. "So do you know anything about your tax fraud case?"
Now the "agent" is going in for the goods.
"Can you verify that I'm talking to the right person," he said. "Can you verify your social security number?"
"You should already have it right," the producer said.
"I already have it, but until you verify it I can't give you the confidential information," the officer said.
The producer and the agent go back and forth for a while. He won't say anything until she gives up her social security number.
"Julie Smith is not allowed to talk to you," the agent said. "Her job was to give you the information that's what she did and this is her supervisor."
"And what's your name sir?"
Wow, what are the odds. You call the IRS and get the same guy.
"We don't just give out our social security number over the phone," Wolchek said.
"Then you can go to your local sheriff's department and they will take steps to arrest you sir," the man said.
"So I'm going to get arrested if I don't give you my social security number," Wolchek said.
"I mean to say your daughter," said the agent.
"Oh my goodness," Wolcheck said.
"So I'm going to get arrested," the producer asked.
This officer clearly doesn't like Wolchek or maybe it's just his acting skills.
"Oh my this is getting me so flustered," Wolchek said. "I don't know what to think, oh my."
"Stop acting so smart you mother(blank)er!" said the agent.
"This leads me to believe this isn't a real IRS agent calling me a mother(blank)er," Wolchek said.
"That's what you are mother(blank)er," the man said.
Wolchek then let on who he really was.
"I'm a television reporter in Michigan," Wolchek said.
"Hey reporter suck my (blank) on your television," the agent said. "Just tell everyone IRS scam called me and said suck my (blank)."
Wolchek tried to keep the scam artist on the line.
"David Cooper how long have you been running this scam," Wolchek said.
"No, this is Abdul Razak," the agent said.
"How long have you been running this scam, don't you feel bad," Wolchek said.
"I need popularity I am a terrorist," said the voice.
"Okay," Wolchek said.
"My name is terrorist," he said.
"Okay," Wolchek said. "I'm real scared of you."
Wolchek loves talking to these types of guys. They are in a foreign country even though their phone number is in the United States.
It is a San Francisco number but it's ringing somewhere across the globe.
Abdul Razak claims he's in Lahore, Pakistan. But then again, Wolchek doubts his real name is Abdul Razak since that's also the name of a very famous soccer player from the ivory coast.
"How long have you been ripping people off like this," Wolchek said. "Don't you feel bad."
"I don't feel bad," said the person. "This is my job. I am a terrorist. I want to buy weapons and bazoom bazoom the whole world."
Wolchek: "What's the name of your group?"
"We are Taliban," the man said.
"Oh you're the Taliban," Wolchek said. "Wow."
Then the guy just going to start acting goofy.
Wolchek: "I think that it's awful that you're ..."
"Hey do you want me to repeat that thing that I have done in Paris," the man said.
"You didn't do any of that," Wolchek said. "You're just some goofball sitting in a phone."
"Hey let me repeat that," the man said. "I will come to your home and do that with an AK47."
The guy's pretty tough over the phone, picking on American senior citizens and young women and trying to fool them into wiring money to the supposed IRS.
"Okay Abdul," Wolchek said. "I'm going to put this on TV and hopefully this will put a stop to your little scam. Enjoy your life out there in Pakistan or wherever the
heck you are."
And that's a shame alert.
The real IRS is not happy.
"If you owe money to the IRS, you're going to get several notices in the mail before we actually call," said Luis Garcia, IRS spokesperson. "The IRS isn't going to call you and demand immediate payment threaten you with jail or revoke your license, anything like that.
"Out of the blue a phone call requesting your social security number, it's not going to be the IRS doing that."