Redwood City police are warning citizens to be wary of telephone scams in which callers claim to represent the Internal Revenue Service or other law enforcement agencies.
Police said they have seen an increase in scams in which the unsuspecting victims are told that there is a problem with their tax returns and are instructed to pay an amount owed immediately under threat of arrest.
Other scams include callers claiming to be law enforcement officials warning victims that a bench warrant will be issued for them unless they make a payment over the phone and lottery scams where callers ask for money over the phone after claiming the victim has won a lottery sweepstakes.
Police advise citizens not to wire money or purchase pre-paid cards for unsolicited calls on the telephone, noting that the IRS and law enforcement do not operate in such a manner.
Similar scams have taken place regularly on the Peninsula including two in South San Francisco Tuesday. One involved someone calling and pretending to be from the IRS and the other said he was from Pacific Gas and Electric.
For more information on how to avoid becoming the victim of telephone scams, people can go to http://redwoodcitypd.blogspot.com/2014/05/telephone-scam-alert.html.