IRS Call Center Scam Owner Arrested

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As I have become older I pay attention less to the news. Even if am aware of current events I do not get wrapped up in who is doing what with whom, or who is in trouble, or who is on the hot seat for being impeached.

But I got some what excited about this headline and the story of an arrest made half way around the world from the United States.

IRS Call Center Scammer Caught!

Who did I care enough to write about on my website? Hitesh Madhubhai Patel

I am sure you are asking “Who the heck is that?”

He is the accused leader of a ring of scam call center companies that were calling on U.S. citizens pretending to be the IRS with the intent to scare people into sending them money.

I never got one of those calls, but I know lots of people who did. I have read many articles online of the last few years about people who got scammed and what the government was trying to do to stop it.

Then the U.S. government got a warrant to arrest Mr. Patel, with the help of the Singapore government.

Why am I writing about this? Because all of this is a really big deal.

U.S. Involvement in Call Center Scams

This is the first time the U.S. has actually gone after a foreign national in connection with telephone scams to people in America. Typically, the bad guys set up call centers all around the world (India and Philippines are most common, but they will also use Pakistan and China) in order to work their scams while staying outside the reach of the U.S. government.

This is great for both the call centers that I work with as well as the consumer in America because it means that the bad guys cannot hide. Now, of course we all know that it takes a while before our government will stop someone and they most likely have to be operating at a pretty big scale. But eventually it will happen.

And that should scare a whole generation of overseas scammers who thought they could hide.

Good for Justice, Good for Business

Now it is not just my ‘justice’ side that is happy, but it is also the part of my professional life that will benefit. You see, when operating inside sales call center teams it obviously involves making and taking phone calls. When there is an increase in scam telemarketing calls it makes people a) hesitate in even answering their phone, and b) if they do answer it they are assuming the call is an attempted scam.

If you are one of the good guys this means you are constantly having to prove to your prospects that you are there to help them. Even if they go to your website they are wondering what will happen when they fill out the form for more information.

If you are a call center sales manager, you know how much of a battle this every day and practically every phone call.

I hope this is the start of a shift for people in the U.S. to go back to seeing inbound calls as a good thing, or with the potential of being good news, and not just seeing a new call come in as a disturbance and something to avoid.

From the Articles:

“Patel was charged in 2016 along with 55 people, most of them of Indian descent, and five companies in the alleged massive scam.”

“Since 2013, the tax official impersonation scam “has been on a relentless path, claiming more than 15,000 victims who have collectively suffered over $75 million in losses”, said Treasury Inspector General J. Russell George.”

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