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Maryland taxpayers warned about phone scam threatening arrest

10/14/2016, 6 a.m.
Comptroller Peter Franchot is warning taxpayers to stay vigilant and safeguard their personal information by being alert to a new ...

— Annapolis— Comptroller Peter Franchot is warning taxpayers to stay vigilant and safeguard their personal information by being alert to a new phone scam aimed at scaring people into paying money.

A taxpayer alerted the agency’s Compliance Division Friday morning that he had received two suspicious phone calls supposedly from the Comptroller’s Office and threatening arrest if he didn’t pay his tax bill. Field Enforcement agents are investigating the phone numbers provided by the taxpayer.

“If anyone calls you asking for personal information or worse yet, threatening you with arrest, don’t respond and hang up immediately,” Comptroller Franchot said. “The staff of my agency would never treat Maryland taxpayers that way. These crooks are trying to scare you by taking your money and stealing your identity. They are shameless, unscrupulous predators trying to destroy your financial sanctity.”

Neither the Comptroller’s Office nor the Internal Revenue Service calls taxpayers and ask for personal information or Social Security numbers.

The Comptroller’s Office also warns taxpayers not to reply to emails requesting confidential information, especially your Social Security number, birth date, salary information or home address. If you receive an email asking for a copy of your W-2 form, you should immediately contact your employer. You may also call 1-800-MD-TAXES or email: mdcomptroller@comp.state.md.us.