According to Upper Cumberland Regional Airport manager Dean Selby, there have been recent reports of area residents receiving phone calls from someone claiming to be with the airport and requesting money.
“We have seen an increase in scammers claiming that there is a package at the airport and to receive it they need to pay a fee,” Selby said.
Selby said these calls should be disregarded or even reported to local authorities, as they are absolutely false.
“This airport will not call and ask you for money to forward a package, take delivery of a parcel or whatever scheme they can think of,” he said.
According to the IRS, there could be a rise in potential scams over the next few weeks, possibly even months.
“Tax scams tend to rise during tax season or during times of crisis, and scam artists are using pandemic to try stealing money and information from honest taxpayers,” IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig is quoted as saying in a press release from 2020. “The IRS provides the Dirty Dozen list to help raise awareness about common scams that fraudsters use to target people. We urge people to watch out for these scams. The IRS is doing its part to protect Americans. We will relentlessly pursue criminals trying to steal your money or sensitive personal financial information.”
The “Dirty Dozen” that Rettig referred to includes:
The IRS urges taxpayers to review the list in a special section on IRS.gov and to be on the lookout for these scams. They also remind taxpayers it is best to not engage potential scammers online or on the phone, but rather to call local law enforcement authorities if they feel threatened.
The current scam the Upper Cumberland Regional Airport has identified would fall under the phishing category, and Selby wants to be sure residents are not providing callers with any important information.
“If there is any doubt, call us, and we will set your mind at ease that it is a scam; please don’t give them credit card or bank information,” he said, and then added that, while he is aware of the scam involving his airport’s name, he is sure they are not the only one being targeted. “There are many variations of the scam, and they may be claiming to be from other agencies as well; I am sure the other agency managers would tell you the same thing.”