PLEASANT VIEW -- Cindy Cisney's client knows he owes the Internal Revenue Service money, but he did not cave in to phone demands for money from a caller who claimed to be an IRS investigator.
It is just one of the latest scams preying on people to get them to give out personal information over the phone to fraudsters, said Bill Brunson, IRS regional spokesman.
"It's not a new one, but it is one of the worse ones," Brunson said.
Cisney of Pleasant View is a tax preparer and a real estate agent. This was the first time she heard about the scam.
Her client called her to let her know he was getting multiple phone calls from people claiming to be IRS investigators.
"He wanted to make sure it wasn't the IRS," Cisney said. "He thought it was a scam but he owes the IRS money and was worried."
Her client said the phone calls started in October. At first he couldn't understand what the person wanted because their accent "was foreign." Cisney's client asked that his name not be used.
He would get phone calls every few days, but still could not understand what was being said, except that it was a person from the IRS.
Then one night around 9:30 he got a call from a person he could understand and the man told him, "The IRS is investigating you right this minute and you owe this much money."
He was uncertain if they told him the exact amount he owed, but said it was in the ballpark. The caller then said if he did not pay the full amount immediately, IRS investigators would show up at his house.
That is when he hung up and called Cisney. She told him the IRS does not work that way.
The IRS has put a lien on his property until he is able to finish paying off the taxes he owes, he said.
Cisney said she is concerned that the scammers may have pulled her client's information off of county property tax records because he is her only client who owes the IRS money.
Richard Maughan, Davis County recorder, said property tax records are public, but in most counties for a person to see who has a lien on their property they have to physically walk into the county offices and search the documents. Some property tax information is online, but the person has to know the address to do a search.
Even though most searches have to be done in the county office, Davis County, like other counties, offers an option to those who want to search online. A person can pay for an online subscription to search the county records.
Utah County is one of the few counties that has all property tax records online and allows anyone to search.
Bronson said if someone does get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS demanding money to be wired to them, the person should just hang up and contact the IRS.
To report an IRS scam, call the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1-800-366-4484 or email the Federal Trade Commission at FTC.gov with the words "IRS Telephone Scam" in the heading.
The IRS also has a website in English and Spanish explaining the different scams the IRS is aware of and what to do at www.irs.gov/uac/Newsroom/IRS-Warns-of-Pervasive-Telephone-Scam.
Contact reporter Loretta Park at 801-625-4252 or email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter at @LorettaParkSE.